Here is Austan Goolsbee giving a nice clear explanation of the two contrasting positions on the table with respect to income taxes. The one with all the huge pink bubbles is of course the Republican proposal, while the one with the reasonably-sized blue bubbles is the administration's plan. I actually think most people understand this, and most people favor the Democrats' plan to extend the Bush tax cuts on the first $250,000 of income, but allow those tax cuts to expire for income above that threshold. A majority of both Houses of Congress is also in favor of this idea, and the President is eager to sign it into law. In a democracy, that ought to be enough to get it done.