My thoughts on the bush tax cut plan
As a laissez-faire capitalist I never met a tax break I didn’t like. I fully believe in the autonomy of the individual and his right to his money. I believe a man deserves every penny he has earned, and that he may use his earnings as he sees fit. I believe that individual rights are property rights; that property rights are financial rights; and that by virtue of all American inalienable liberties (and the inherent autonomy within those liberties), men deserve to keep the wealth they have generated.
Yet despite my tax-relief affinity, I recently found myself against President Bush’s massive tax-cut plan. I heard the plan out and found myself, despite my near physical attraction to tax breaks, against the President’s arrangement. I’d never really thought about it before – I’ve never really had to as I’m only twenty-one – but tax breaks at this stage in the game of American politics just aren’t enough. Something is missing from the Bush plan and I’ve only recently put my finger on exactly what it is.
The government does not earn money; it steals money from you at the point of a gun (if you don’t pay, prison) and uses it to finance its (too) many programs. Cutting taxes while in the midst of what appears to be a chain of wars (which will require massive amounts of taxpayer dollars) and yet retaining the programs that will be most affected by the decrease in government revenue will do nothing more than create drastically under-funded government programs which will whither away into impotency but yet will never die because amputating tumors from the government is a nasty idea for a hopeful politician. Power in government wants to remain at all costs. Proposing the elimination of government jobs and of government programs initially intended to help people (as all government programs purport) will never fly in a democratic, utilitarian nation such as ours.
Instead, the programs will become depleted of resources and will become, say three years from now, the lead story in Newsweek magazine. The story will read that many of our most important “social legislation programs” (whatever those are) have become, as I said before, drastically under-funded and that what’s needed by our next president (most likely a democrat, after two Bush terms) is an increase in taxes to re-generate the livelihood of these our most "important" and "moral" branches of government welfare.
What will be forgotten is how useless those programs were, and how they hemorrhaged your taxpayer money into the hands of god-knows-who, all while claiming to help the poor of America while never actually helping the poor of America. (The only way to help poor people is to donate your time, money and effort directly to them or to private organizations created to aid them, not just by signing some check over to the government at the point of a gun so that they can do what they will with your hard-earned money.) The key to political success is naming a problem without ever solving it.
What are needed most today are massive tax cuts and government program cuts. Anything less than that will only perpetuate the never-ending circle of high tide/low tide funding for government programs that were only created in the first place to get someone elected (and once created were ignored due to the promise of an even better platform for the next election).
If the government really wants to help the country it will let its citizens retain the money they’ve earned, and use it as they see fit. Cutting taxes is a crucial step, but without cutting gangrenous and corrupt programs as well, all we’ll ever hear come 2004 and 2008 are the tax-hike rally-cries of politicians looking to steal your money and use it to effectually finance their re-election.