Representation Without Taxation

A Headline Twist

Sometimes I'm amazed at users here who want to tell me to "do my homework." In view of my academic background I usually do, in fact, do just that. I posted a question, just a question, regarding income taxation and voter qualification. It was a simple question and I'm getting all kinds of answers. I've had to respond to one answer already because of the total lack of knowledge on one user's part. I won't dwell on the particulars but you can see some of the answers so far and maybe take a stab at it yourself at the link below.

This "Super Committee" concept they have dreamed up is troublesome to many people, and it should be. What are all the legislators outside of the committee supposed to be doing while this small group, 6 Senators and 6 House Representatives, meet behind what will surely be closed doors? Transparency to the public, total transparency, needs to shine upon this group. The public has the right to know what they are discussing. I suggest to the President that all meetings be broadcast on CSPAN, but not like the health care reform broadcasts he promised the American public which didn't happen.

The "Super Committee" actually has a chance to do something constructive rather than play partisan politics which is more than likely to occur. Which brings me to the title of this Hub. I am speaking of income taxation and only income taxation. It's an accepted fact that 51% of income earners pay zero income tax, not a penny. In fact, some people receive back far more than they put in. So that percentage of people are happy that they get representation without taxation. I would be too but I happen to be in the 49th percentile that pays for my representation even though is extremely poor representation at the present time.

Here are some things they should be looking at. I keep hearing lawmaker after lawmaker talk about how the taxation system needs reformation. Hear! Hear! The tax code, as written, is full of loop holes which allow more than the wealthy in this country to take advantage of the system. Bear in mind that it isn't the "wealthy" who are writing tax law but the people we elect to represent us. A good CPA just applies the tax code to what exists when the final tally is in. It does seem rather odd that the present tax laws allow more than a majority to pay nothing. This is where I see indifference by many to the size of the federal government and the cost of having the bloated bureaucracy that it has developed into. They have no skin in the game. The mentality of the pay nothing crowd is to demand more services. The reason why is rather obvious in that they aren't paying for those services.

If everything is "on the table," which I don't disagree with, then lets not nibble around the edges but get down to the meat of the subject. Currently they are nibbling by discussing eliminating three big deductions. The consequences of eliminating those deductions need to be thoroughly thought through and some of our lawmakers don't think past the end of their noses and campaign war chests. Those biggies are interest on home mortgages, eliminating deductions for state and local taxes and charitable giving.

Lets consider the consequences of tinkering with those items. Eliminating the interest paid on home mortgages could have a very negative impact on home values. For those of us who have skin in that game, we're already seeing our property values taking a dive. For those who want to talk about the poor and less fortunate, what will be the effect on non-profits who assist those in need if that gets the ax? Eliminating the tax deduction of state and local taxes will be detrimental to those states which presently have a very high state and local tax base. To those residents that deduction has great value. Why not just tell them that they need to seek another place to hang their hat because many of them will.

That is what I term "nibbling around the edges" of tax reform. The "Super Committee" actually has the opportunity to do something productive in the area of tax reform. Thinking outside the box would be helpful. If they don't want to scrap the entire present tax system and go to a regressive tax plan or the FAIR tax, then consider lowering both the income tax rates for both individuals and corporations and make up the difference with a national sales tax. Lets really talk about the redistribution of wealth and have some of that 51% hard earned dollars hitting the till. Makes them uncomfortable to even think about it I'm sure.

It makes perfect sense to me that if every citizen of this country had to pay a national sales tax they would begin to question where the money is going and how much "service bang" they are getting for their buck. When, and if, it had to be raised to cover any additional spending it would require them to do a bit of cost comparison to see if the value is there or not. The present system of allowing 51% to dodge the bullet requires them to do nothing more than demand more.

The "Super 12" actually will have the opportunity to reform the tax system as it exists in this nation. Can you imagine how much money would "not" be spent if the IRS disappeared from the picture or got severely scaled back? This Hub is intended for you, the reader, to share your ideas about how to reform what is broken so that all citizens and wage earners contribute to the cause and have some skin in the game.

They need to think outside the box and stop worrying about getting reelected and put the interests of this country and its citizens to the forefront. Right now we are drowning in debt and future generations are in serious economic peril. If you want to put it all on the table then put everything there, not just nibblets. They're good with the right sauce at Chik-Fil-A, but we need something with a bit more beef to it.


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Comments 18 comments

breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 5 years ago

I believe we should institute a flat tax that will include that segment of the population that currently pays nothing. Then we can institute a VAT but it has to be low because most states already have a sales tax. It really isn't that difficult. Up useful, interesting and awesome piece of writing.


Partisan Patriot 5 years ago

Froggy

I'm with you and Pop on this one; flat tax is the way to go and those that don't pay shouldn't play; No tax no vote!!!!!!!!!!


The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 5 years ago from Arlington, TX Author

BPOP & PP - It's past time to level the tax playing field. "We, the People..." means Lottie, Dottie and Everybody.


Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 5 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

Froggie: In my country CANADA, Everyone legally employed is obligated to pay taxes.

As for voting this is a right, a right earned by being born a legal citizen or becoming a "Legal Citizen" in my country.

Foreigners, who become legal citizens are told that it is their obligation as well as their right to vote, but since most foreigners haven't got a clue about who or what to vote for, if they vote, they vote for whoever some friend or acquaintance says to vote for regardless of whether that person would be their personal preference or not.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas

At this juncture in our history, I don't think the current system of taxation matters and for significant reasons. One, there is no such thing in Washington as "enough money". Regardless of the amount that the fed collects, it will spend all of it and continue to spend just as it does today. Those who serve us do not have any fiscal responsibility and they are too busy buying votes to care. Secondly, until we institute an effective budget process which gains control and eliminates wasteful out of control spending, caps the situation against a baseline, cuts out the fat, and demands a balanced annual budget, everything else is moot for the best taxation idea is the world will fall miserably short of providing "enough revenue" for the Washington crowd of theives, liers ,and con artist. WB


The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 5 years ago from Arlington, TX Author

Wayne - I won't argue with what you said because I agree. The whole system needs a thorough going over, the federal government needs to be cut by at least 50% and become what the Constitution says it should be - limited in power over the states, and spending needs to equal revenues.

Part of the deal that was just cut will be a balanced budget amendment vote. That is critical and the majority of Americans are backing that. It will be interesting to see how the Democrats, under Reid who is a political dinosaur, vote when that bill gets to the Senate. I believe that part of making that a requirement in the compromise was to get Dems on record concerning the issue. Many say they want one. We'll find out shortly.

Fixing the tax system where there are taxes spread across the board for all Americans, in this case paying income taxes, is part of the mix and what I focused on here. I would rather scrap the tax code and institute a FAIR tax myself.


Stewart Engelman 5 years ago

Instead of adding a VAT or national sales tax to the FIT, why not simply scrap the FIT entirely and replace it with the FAIR tax? Loopholes would be eliminated, cheating would go down, and the government could actually raise more money without depressing business investment and jobs. A simple 20% FAIR tax would raise $1 trillion per year more than the FIT and FICA combined, money desparately needed to pay off the official debt (which we could do over about three decades if we also cut federal operating spending by about 40%).

Here's a simple formula that would solve our problems:

(1) Limit federal operating spending to 15% of GNP (it was only 2% in the Founders' day, so this doesn't seem stingy).

(2) Mandate a balanced budget when we have no outstanding investor owned debt, and mandate a 7.5% surplus when we do (for debt reduction; exceptions can be made for years when we have major wars or significant natural disasters).

(3) Phaseout all federal entitltements (say, over 20 years) so most of the off balance sheet debt can be abrogated. States, at their option, can choose to implement, and tax for, whatever social programs they wish to provide.

The above would not only eliminate all of our federal debt over a few decades, but it would also, via the federal operating cost cuts, return an avalanche of powers illegally usurped from the states and people by the federal government (powers whose enforcement can't be paid for must by definition revert back). In other words, we would solving our fiscal problem, and recussitating the Tenth Amendment, at the same time.


thebluestar profile image

thebluestar 5 years ago from Northern Ireland

Froggy I can not comment on the state of American politics but I can say well written as in your usual style. Voted up and awesome.


TheManWithNoPants profile image

TheManWithNoPants 5 years ago from Tucson, Az.

Great job Frog. I don't like it when people come in to a hubbers comments section trying to steal the show, so I'll keep it short. I agree with Brown's statement. That's why I do what I do.

Good stuff bro!

jim


Ghost32 5 years ago

Awesome work as always, Jim, with the single exception that I don't see the FAIR tax plan as regressive. Under that plan, every adult citizen receives a "prebate" check from the feds UP FRONT every month in the amount calculated to cover the taxes they're likely to pay for essential goods and services. So the poor, who won't be buying anything BUT essential goods and services, STILL pay a net nothing in taxes.

Then, with all retail goods being sales taxed, it's highly likely the more affluent among us will be purchasing higher-priced "stuff". And with no loopholes, neither the rich nor the drug dealers can squiggle out of paying.

If not progressive (rather than regressive), it certainly seems at any rate "fair and balanced" to me.


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

Gone over this Frog and generally agree with the consensus. Flat tax needs to be seriously considered but does it have a chance. A question too. What in your learned opinion is the difference between socialism and fascism. Sure the formers for a more even distribution of wealth and the latter the melding of govt. and big business but what else? Thanks Prince


The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 5 years ago from Arlington, TX Author

Alastar - Here's an excellent article written about the two movements.

http://www.lawrence.edu/sorg/objectivism/socfasc.h...

Frog


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

Thanks Prince: check it out thoroughly later today.


poetvix profile image

poetvix 5 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

I could not agree more about the Super committee. I don’t like the formation of it but they do have a chance to do good. Personally, I further agree the only way that will happen is if they are watched every second of every day.

I was not aware such a large percentage of the population at large did not pay taxes. I like the idea of a national sales tax not only for the reason you mention but also because it puts some more of the tax burden on all of those non citizens and undocumented workers that currently don't pay in. If your going to receive services, you should help contribute to the funding of said services, equal access and all you know.


The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 5 years ago from Arlington, TX Author

poetvix - What concerns me is the composition of the Super 12 on the Democratic side. All those people are tax and spend hardliners who helped get us in this mess deeper during the first two years of this administration.

Kerry is a nut job and Clyburn, who unfortunately right now happens to represent my district, is the King of Pork. I don't see a moderate Democratic face in the crowd but then Reid and Porkulosi made the selctions.


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

Voted UP and UAI and I thank you for the lovely recommendation! Right as usual, mar.


Harvey Stelman 5 years ago

Froggy, This is all crap! We already pay them to do this. It's only a political ploy by Obama. H


MonetteforJack profile image

MonetteforJack 5 years ago from Tuckerton, NJ

I voted up, interesting and useful! Am also linking your article to mine, as your hub is very insightful. Thanks and God bless!

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