Skip to comments.Message from the Political Class: All Your Money Belongs to Us
Posted on 02/14/2014 6:33:53 AM PST by Kaslin
Whats the defining characteristic of our political masters?
Going all the way back to when they ran for student council in 6th grade, is it a craven desire to say or do anything to get elected?
Is it the corrupt compulsion to trade earmarks, loopholes, and favors in exchange for campaign cash?
Or is it the knee-jerk desire to buy votes by spending other peoples money?
The answer is yes, yes, and yes, but I want to add something else to the list.
One of the most odious features of politicians is that they think theyre entitled to all of our money. But it goes beyond that. They also think theyre doing us a favor and being magnanimous if they let us keep some of what we earn.
Think Im joking or exaggerating?
Consider the fact that the crowd in Washington says that provisions in the internal revenue code such as IRAs are tax expenditures and should be considered akin to government spending.
So if you save for retirement and arent subject to double taxation, youre not making a prudent decision with your own money. Instead, youre the beneficiary of kindness and mercy by politicians that graciously have decided to give you something.
And the statists at the Washington Postwill agree, writing that folks with IRAs are getting a helping hand from the government.
Or if you have a business and the government doesnt impose a tax on your investment expenditures, dont think that youre being left alone with neutral tax policy. Instead, you should get on your knees and give thanks to politicians that have given you a less-punitive depreciation schedule.
And the Congressional Budget Office, the Joint Committee on Taxation, and theGovernment Accountability Office will all agree, saying that youre benefiting from a tax expenditure.
The same attitude exists in Europe. But instead of calling it a tax expenditure when taxpayers gets to keep the money they earn, the Euro-crats say it is a subsidy or a form of state aid.
Speaking at the European Competition Forum in Brussels, EU commissioner Joaquin Almunia said he would investigate whether moves by national governments to tailor their tax laws to allow companies to avoid paying tax had the same effect as a subsidy. Subsidising certain businesses could be deemed as anti-competitive, breaching the blocs rules on state aid. The remarks by the Spanish commissioners, who described the practice of aggressive tax planning as going against the principles of the EUs single market, are the latest in a series of salvos by EU officials aimed at clamping down on corporate tax avoidance. He added that the practice undermines the fairness and integrity of tax systems and was socially untenable.
Needless to say, Senor Almunias definition of fairness is that a never-ending supply of money should be transferred from taxpayers to the political elite.
The head of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development wants to take this mentality to the next level. He says companies no longer should try to legally minimize their tax burdens.
International technology companies should stop considering it their duty to employ tax-dodging strategies, said Angel Gurria, head of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. The OECD, an international economic organization supported by 34 member countries including the U.S., U.K., Germany and Japan, will publish the results of its research on the issue for governments to consider within the next two years, Gurria said.
And you wont be surprised to learn that the OECDs research on the issue is designed to create a one-size-fits-all scheme that will lead to companies paying a lot more tax.
But lets think about the broader implications of his attitude about taxation. For those of us with kids, should we choose not to utilize the personal exemptions when filling out our tax returns? Should we keep our savings in a regular bank account, where it can be double taxed, instead of an IRA or 401(k)?
Should we not take itemized deductions, or even the standard deduction? Is is somehow immoral to move from a high-tax state to a low-tax state? In other words, should we try to maximize the amount of our income going to politicians?
According to Mr. Gurria, the answer must be yes. If its bad for companies to legally reduce their tax liabilities, then it also must be bad for households.
By the way, its worth pointing out that bureaucrats at the OECD including Gurria are completely exempt from paying any income tax. So if there was an award for hypocrisy, he would win the trophy.
P.S. Switching topics to the NSA spying controversy, heres a very amusing t-shirt I saw on Twitter.
The shirt isnt as funny as the Obama-can-hear-you-now images, but it makes a stronger philosophical point.
P.P.S. Lets close with an update on people going Galt.
I wrote with surprise several years ago about the number of people who were giving up American citizenship to escape Americas onerous tax system.
But that was just the beginning of a larger trend. The numbers began to skyrocket last year, probably in part the result of the awful FATCA legislation.
Well, we now have final numbers for 2013.
What makes these numbers really remarkable is that expatriates are forced topay punitive exit taxes before escaping the IRS.
Which is why there are probably at least 10 Americans who simply go off the grid and move overseas for every citizen who uses the IRS process to officially expatriate.
Not exactly a ringing endorsement of Obamanomics.
Greetings, Tax Drones!
Not if I don’t report it.
This brings to mind the president’s petulant comment; “you didn’t build that. “
Politicians almost all think the world revolves around them.
I believe the pols will try to grab 401Ks and IRAs in my lifetime.
Come and get it boys. If you do, you obviously believe the “it” is my money.
Odds are it will happen before the end of 0bama's term.
This happened to my daughter in 6th grade. She ran for class President against a fellow classmate who promised a soda machine for all! That is all he campaigned on and of course won handily.
Guess what the school never got? Yep, no soda machine ever materialized. My daughter still hates politics, everybody lies to get elected, even 6th graders!
Hillary is already on record favoring government seizure of 401k’s.
Here is the ORIGINAL version..
Far from it. In fact I'm getting ready to write a sizable (and I do mean sizable) check to the State that they will redistribute to unions and assorted other parasites for votes.
While I myself have never ever asked the State for a damn thing.
Whats the defining characteristic of our political masters?.
POWER & GREED
More than a decade ago Dickhead Gephardt was being interviewed on PBS and revealed that his democrips believed citizens were unable to handle their own retirement funds so the democrips were making plans to take over the management of their retirement programs, for guaranteed returns don’tchaknow.
You didn’t earn that!
Bump for later
Truth of the matter is that there is not enough money in the world to pay this country’s unfunded liability.
We are a black hole.
Keep the propaganda focus on the politicians, and the constituents who buy politicians continue to rob.
Yes, they latched on to the last stock market downturn and subsequent loss in 401Ks as a reason to take over individual retirements.