Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Obama Tax Grab

Senator Obama gave an interview today to the WSJ about his economic plans. I'll post something later about the whole plan, such as it is, but this part caught my eye:

Sen. Obama has proposed a variety of measures that would raise taxes on individuals at the top end and provide tax relief to middle- and lower-income households. Under his plans, those in the middle would see their after-tax income increase by 2.4%, or $1,042, according to a nonpartisan analysis by the Washington-based Tax Policy Center. Americans with incomes above $2.8 million would see their after-tax income decrease by 11.5%.

Because he doesn't define middle class, it's hard to say exactly what this means in dollars. Is it a direct transfer from one class of Americans to another? How much of the money raised from the wealthy does he just redistribute and how much stays in DC to get spent by politicians? Apparently, a lot gets left in Washington because his spending plans can be called anything but limited. This is just old style centralized industrial planning. Why do politicians think they know better than the rest of us mere mortals where our hard earned dollars should be invested? Why do voters keep falling for government schemes that have already been tried and have already failed?

Update: And if you believe that part about a tax cut for the middle class, I've got some land for sale just west of here. He'll get the middle class with the behind the back cap and trade system. He expects cap and trade to realize $100 billion a year. Where does he imagine that money comes from? The evil corporations will just pass it along to consumers. The bottom line is whether you believe the fantasy that it comes from the evil corporations or not, it must come from somewhere. It is still $100 billion a year coming out of the private sector and getting sucked into the hands of politicians. He's not getting that kind of scratch just from the wealthy....

Update II:

To "capture some of the nation's economic growth," he said in the interview, "and reinvest it in things we know have to be done like science, technology, research and fixing our energy policy, then that is actually going to spur productivity."

Capture some of the nation's economic growth? At least fishermen practice catch and release....

Update III:

Sen. Obama also proposes eliminating capital-gains taxes on start-up companies, though he backs higher capital-gains rates overall. He hasn't defined precisely what he means by a "start-up." Wasn't he concerned that tax lawyers would simply form "start-ups" for existing companies looking for a new tax break?

"There are always folks who are interested in gaming the system, and obviously one of the things you have to do with tax policy generally is to pin down definitions so they're not twisted beyond recognition," he said. But he argued, "Companies that are starting off...should be allowed to accumulate capital, reinvest profits, if there are any, to the point that they stabilize."

What happens after they've accumulated capital, reinvested profits and stabilized? Then they won't be allowed to accumulate capital or reinvest profits? Does he believe that once companies "stabilize" they shouldn't be allowed to grow? Why would we enact a policy that punishes anyone who works hard or gets lucky enough to succeed? Who is going to accumulate capital, reinvest profits and then give the spoils to government? How is that fair? The investor takes the risk and the polticians get the reward?

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