photo by EfrankE

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Middle Class Tax Cut Increase

Sometime in my early twenties, my dad hired one of his doctoral students with the appropriate job experience to lead us in re-roofing the house he and my mother had recently moved into. I think the three of us completed the entire job in one day, two at most.

This student recounted how in his youth he had worked summers for a man who solicited clients for his re-roofing services by going door to door in the rural south. The student explained to us that this business man-of-one for whom he worked told him it was a waste of time asking people whose roofs were deteriorated if they wanted to contract for a new roof, because obviously, as demonstrated by the condition of their roofs, they were too poor to afford a new roof. It was more profitable, business-wise, to sell someone who already had a decently appearing roof a newer one, since he could likely afford a new roof.

Most people by now have seen the report that 47% of American households pay no income tax - that nearly half of the population rides on the back of the other half, against whose income is charged the costs for the expenditures of the U.S. government.

Columnist Mark Steyn quotes these statistics: “The [mere] top 5 percent of taxpayers contribute 60 percent of revenue. The top 10 percent provide 75 percent. Another 40-odd percent make up the rest. And half are exempt.”

So, where will the money be acquired to fund the increasing cost of entitlements, further compounded by health care obligations?

The poor don’t have enough money to tax significantly. Neither do the wealthy, there aren’t enough of them. You’re probably familiar with the statement that if the government confiscated all of the wealth of the richest 1% of Americans, it wouldn’t even fund the expenditures of the government for one day.

No, the group most capable of providing the means through taxation to fund Washington’s incessant appetite for greater and greater spending is the middle class, let’s call them “new roofers” for the sake of descriptive simplicity.

The President promised that those making under $250,000 per year would not see their taxes increased one thin dime, I believe was his terminology. Since average national income has dropped 3.2% since his election, that promise is helpful, if not entirely reassuring, speaking from a “new roofer’s” point of view.

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