Friday, April 15, 2011

TAXES

Nobody likes tax day. It is a nightmare of paperwork and the sinking feeling in your stomach that you did something wrong and that men in black suits will come to your home and audit you.

Besides the fact that taxes are due there are other headlines that prompt thought on this issue.

Obama’s new budget plan for 2012 claims to reduce the deficit in the next 12 years, primarily, by raising taxes. His first target is Bush’s so called “tax cuts for the rich.” Did you know that one of those “tax cuts for the rich” include the elimination of the marriage penalty tax? Yeah, if you are married you no longer have to pay higher taxes because of it. Under Obama’s plan married peoples’ taxes will go up.

Also, there has been a bit of a spat between Senator Tom Coburn (a solid conservative from Oklahoma) and the founder of the conservative organization American’s for Tax Reform Grover Norquest. Both of these men have admirable records. Both want to reduce the Federal deficit. But Norquist is calling out the Senator for supporting small tax increases to help cover government expenses.

I believe in paying my taxes. It is the right thing to do. There is, however, a problem with both Coburn and Obama’s solution. Raising taxes will not fix the problem. Our government has proven that when they have lots of money they just spend more of it.

Practically speaking there are lots of attractive programs out there; too many for us to assume that the congress will not spend the tax increases. It might start out small. They may say, as they often have, that for every $100 they bring in only a few dollars will go to new programs and the rest will help pay off the debit.

It doesn’t happen.

They need to cut the debit and earn trust by being serious about balancing the budget. They need to have that adult conversation about our budget problem and learn the lesson that you should not spend money that you do not have. Until then, “Read my lips, no new taxes.”

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