Two different Americas when it comes to taxes

Tuesday is the deadline for filing federal income taxes. Half of American taxpayers will pay 97 percent of the individual income taxes the government will collect for 2008, according to IRS data. The other half will pay little or nothing, yet receive billions in benefits in the form of cash, subsidies, “free” services and other benefits and loans.

There are indeed “Two Americas,” but the two aren’t the rich and poor, but taxpayers and tax consumers. It’s going to get even tougher for the taxpayers in the near future, thanks to legislation being readied by Democrats who control Congress.

First, there are some differences between the Senate and House versions of the 2009 federal budget, but, however the details are ironed out, the Democrats will kill President Bush’s 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.

If his promised veto is over-ridden by Congress, it will mean a minimum tax hike for every American taxpayer of about $3,000 annually. The increase could be even more, though, because buried in the Democrats’ budget resolution are 17 “reserve” funds of additional taxing authority.

Even without the reserve tax hikes, however, allowing the Bush cuts to expirewill mean that 20.3 percent, or one of every five dollars, of Gross Domestic Product will soon be consumed by government.

But that’s not all of the tax hikes the Democrats are planning. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) conceded last week that the anti-global warming “cap-and-trade” system proposed by Sens. Joseph Lieberman, ID-Conn., and John Warner, R-Va., will require $1.3 trillion in new tax revenues over 10 years.

So add another $1,400 or so on top of the $3,000 in higher taxes.

It could be even more, however, because Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee head, says Lieberman-Warner is merely “a good starting point.”

No wonder Sen. Jim Inhofe, the Oklahoma Republican who is the Ranking Minority Member of Boxer’s panel, says she “doesn’t get it.”

Inhofe faces a tough fight in opposing Lieberman-Warner, however, because such Senate GOP stalwarts as Sen. Lindsay Graham of South Carolina and presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain of Arizona also favor such legislation.

Higher federal taxes are typically followed by more spending, which in turn requires additional levies. With this vicious tax-and-spend-and-tax cycle also comes more burdensome bureaucratic regulation on the productive business and entrepreneurial energies that power the tax-paying segment of the economy.

Will the Democrats ever learn that geese only lay golden eggs in fairy tales?

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

City Administrator Naomi Kelly said Wednesday that the allegations against her husband were “based on the word of a liar.” (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
City Administrator Naomi Kelly takes leave after feds charge husband

High-ranking official under scrutiny over 2016 China trip

The J Church train could begin running again later this month on at least part of its surface route. (Mira Laing/Special to S.F. Examiner)
First Muni trains will return to service Dec. 19

Three additional bus routes coming back online in January

Smoking cannabis. (Shutterstock)
Supes ban tobacco smoking in apartments but exempt cannabis

San Francisco banned smoking and vaping of tobacco in apartments Tuesday night,… Continue reading

Dr. Grant Colfax and Mayor London Breed said new restrictions could come this week due to rising COVID-19 cases.<ins> (Examiner screenshot)</ins>
Breed: ‘More restrictive action’ needed to slow spread of COVID-19

San Francisco officials said Tuesday tougher restrictions will soon be imposed to… Continue reading

Many landlords fought the proposal requiring them to register properties, calling it an invasion of privacy. 
Kevin N. Hume/
S.F. Examiner
Housing inventory wins unanimous approval from supervisors

Legislation will require landlords to register properties, report vacancies and rents

Most Read