Why The Child Tax Credit Is So Important, Even If You Don’t Have Kids


Look, I already know that all of my readers are card carrying Mensa members, otherwise you would never be able to figure out what I’m talking about. But as we celebrate the passage of the Covid relief bill, I want to present an angle on something I believe is being overlooked, the Child Tax Credit. Not that part itself, but what it actually means when you look deeper.

I will start this article with a personal revelation, since I’ve actually been where some of the majority of the families that will benefit from the Child Tax Credit will help, and so I know of what I speak.

Over an 11 year period, 1980, 1981, 1986, and 1991, I sired 4 daughters. For the purposes of this discussion, and it’s importance, I am only going to speak of circumstances during the period of my raising my first two daughters.

I never graduated college, so at the age of 23, when I had my first daughter, I wasn’t pulling down a high 5 digit paycheck. But due to a combination of luck, hard work, and particular skills that showed themselves at the right time, I was never a minimum wage worker with a family either. But I was most certainly in that majority of the lower middle class that didn’t have $300 in savings to cover an unexpected expense.

And if you’ve ever been a parent, then you already know that life is nothing but an endless march of unexpected expenses. Having a child is like living the movie The Money Pit, except with a pulse and more noise. And this is what makes the Child tax Credit so important, and not just for the young parents of modest needs that it will help.

When I had my first two daughters, if I ever got word from the federal government that they were going to start slipping a cool $600 a month into my checking account to help me to raise my kids? I would have cried until my tear ducts fell out.

Because people like me don’t have investment accounts, we’re not day traders, and none of us even know what a Capitol gains Tax is. That $600 a month would have gone out every bit as quickly as it came in. Groceries, clothes, shoes, school supplies, and yes, since you’re a parent, a little at Toys-R-Us, a pizza night. And with a little luck, and a steady paycheck, it might leave a little left over to start working on that $300-Rainy-Day-Nest-Egg.

But here’s why the Child Tax Credit is so important, and not just to the families it will lift out of poverty. Because lower class, and lower middle class families tend to spend their income where they live! And all of those groceries, and clothes, and shoes, and pizzas I talked about above will be bought from local merchants.

This Child tax Credit won’t just lift up the families that receive it, it will lift up entire lower and lower middle class neighborhoods where the recipients reside! Remember, people spend money where they live. And increased spending in these neighborhoods will lead to increased demand, and increased employment when new stores open to replace stores that fell to the virus.

Mark my words, the Child Tax Credit is going to have an impact far beyond the simple family lives that it touches. It is going to improve and gentrify lives through entire neighborhoods. This is the brilliance of ensuring that this part passed into law. The influx of income into lower and lower middle class neighborhoods will almost surely ensure the starting of new, small, local businesses, all hiring locally, to replace the ones that were lost to the virus. And in doing so, will drive the engine of recovery throughout the nation.

This is what Trump never understood. You can’t repair the economy until you get the goddamn virus under control. And once you do, nothing will happen until you give people the money to start to spend again, and to generate the starting of new small businesses that drive the economy. Biden got the memo. And the Republicans that voted against this bill are going to look like shit.

Follow me on Twitter at @RealMurfster35


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  1. It’s simple, give poorer people money and they spend it, revitalising the economy. Give rich people more money and they just add it to the pile and don’t spend it, or worse, employ it in speculative ‘investments’ causing asset bubbles and wrecking the economy.

  2. And, just think about this – Rachel pointed out a “time bomb” in the Child Tax Credit! It expires in 2 years! I wonder how many republiQanons will vote against renewing it after their constituents get used to a nice deposit every month? And all democrats will be calling them out for not voting for it the first time around! Because of course that’s when many nuts are up for election, and we have almost 2 years get the message out about who they can thank for it in the first place!

    • Well, let’s not forget about Trump’s great “tax cut” deal. What most Americans don’t realize is that THEIR cuts expire around 2027 or so while the tax cuts for the uber-wealthy and corporations NEVER expire. All the Republicons voted for those cuts (and you can damn well be sure they knew all about the expiration date for the lower and middle class cuts).

      And, it’s kind of funny how Trump planned it: If he’d managed to get re-elected last year, the tax cuts wouldn’t expire until a couple of years after he left office so whoever would be in the White House then would have to suffer the consequences. And, I’m kind of guessing that Trump has forgotten about that expiration date, otherwise he wouldn’t be making plans for a 2024 White House run (even just pretending to run) unless he intends to run another tax cut scheme/con: To basically extend the lower/middle class cuts another decade (although calling it a “new” tax cut; by the time it works through Congress, the current tax cuts will have expired) and cut the millionaires and big businesses taxes even more.

  3. My small TN town isn’t going to be on the gentrification list anytime soon. These days, the place is too top heavy with retirees, all of whom are too busy with their own baggage to figure out how to save this town. So I figure another five years of rot before we get anywhere…but I’d like to be wrong.

  4. This is exactly the point that the GOP refuses to recognize when it comes to almost all social programs – unemployment, welfare, food stamps, the ACA, etc. As much as they are laudable for helping individuals, which should be the goal of any sane society, they are designed to keep the individuals as contributing members of the economy (and thus society), by pumping money into the economy. The effect is to support all businesses small and large, the local communities, and the country as a whole.

    Study after study shows that these benefits, far from costing society, have a return on investment that far exceeds their initial cost, both in terms of initial investment back into society (buying groceries and school supplies and clothes and birthday and Xmas gifts, going to restaurants and movies, etc.), and in the ripple effect when businesses receive that money and can invest, pay their workers, hire more people, etc.

    On the other hand, the GOP model of telling everyone you’re on your own, pull yourself up by your own bootstraps (except the uber rich, of course, who for some reason need more help and tax breaks than a single mom of 4), simply leads to more poverty and homelessness and crime and despair.

    So yes, the parts of the stimulus bill that lift 1/2 of all children who are in poverty out, including the child tax credit, may be the most consequential.

  5. The immoral Aaron Sorkin on Republican fiscal policy:

    President Josiah Bartlet:
    I’m not an economist, but no, wait, I AM an economist. So, their plan will do what, C.J.?

    Claudia Jean ‘C.J.’ Cregg:
    Explode the…

    President Josiah Bartlet:
    [cutting her off] Explode the deficit. Will it stimulate the economy, Josh?

    Josh Lyman:
    It’ll stimulate the Swiss economy.

    President Josiah Bartlet:
    Josh gets extra points for being funny and right at the same time.

  6. I think it a host look at it like this there r many families that has never had anything an the rich stayed rich while the poor always,wished for things that they didn’t have money for an the poor is not only black,it’s every color not only r u depriving the kids but it ppl like individuals with out kids middle class poor an don’t have anything to show for in life cause they always live with out anything so I say to these republicans that voted no or don’t care about the poor they r ppl to an just remember God is showing u everyday there must be a change in thing sure there r rich ppl out here an they don’t care about the next person but God could change that in a blink of an eye then wat would u do or say.Thank u Lord for making a change for many of us low income an middle class ppl


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