Saturday, August 13, 2011

Who plays and who really pays?

Chris Kobus has a must read post over on Right Wing News. Chris, rightfully, asks:

Why does CNN point out that majority want higher taxes on the rich, but don't point out that the majority pay no federal income taxes? And that bottom 40% actually get money back?

Chris goes on with a series of charts and graphs to show just how imbalanced our tax code is.

Now rather than pointing out the Media bias (Chris does a much better job than I could), I want to throw out a few solutions. In the comments section I laid out a couple of possibilities:

I see a huge issue in our current tax code. What if we changed the code to one of two ways:

1. Abolish the income tax entirely and replace it with a national sales tax. This would by definition make sure that all Americans participate in paying for the government and have a say by voting with their dollars.

2. This one's more radical and surely has no chance. But if you are a chronic welfare recipient, then you give up your right to vote. This of course is much more cumbersome and creates a huge verification issue (not to mention Constitutional dilemma). But it would certainly incentivize those wishing to be a part of the democratic process to get off the dole. Not to mention reduce the number of democratic votes by at least half.

Once welfare recipients realize their access to the treasury is no longer there, they will have to, gasp, change their behavior.

I could go on and talk about the flat tax and other changes to the code but all these solutions have one thing in common. And that is if Democracy is going to work, then the entire citizenry will have to participate. And that means not only voting but paying as well. Our current tax system rewards bad behavior while discouraging good behavior. And this, my friends, is a recipe for disaster for the republic.

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