In your July 17 editorial (“Stop posturing and threats about debt limit, ceiling”), you write, “Increasing taxes is always counterproductive; increasing taxes now would be frightfully self-defeating.”

It seems to me this sort of categorical statement is perfectly absurd, particularly if you’re not going to define the objective which you feel increasing taxes would stymie. If the objective is “Allow 1 percent of the richest Americans to continue hoarding nearly 40 percent of the nation’s wealth because at some undetermined point they may start to create jobs with that money,” then sure, raising taxes on them would be counterproductive.

If, on the other hand, the objective is to bring our country’s revenue in line with its spending, ending tax breaks for those who can actually afford to sacrifice a little is a far more reasonable option than further slashing public programs that assist those in the middle class on down. Saying that to do so is “always counterproductive” in this context is easy enough to disprove: Revenues grew significantly following Clinton’s 1993 budget reconciliation. Even conservative hero Ronald Reagan wound up raising taxes to buoy revenues with the 1982 Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act, after which (using numbers from Tim Pawlenty, of all people) “the Reagan recovery grew at 4.9 percent.”

Raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans, who could still afford to live in utter splendor while contributing a reasonable amount to help repair a country that has clearly been very good to them, may not be a cure-all, but to state that tax increases are “always counterproductive” is blatant intellectual dishonesty.