The primary complaints comes once again from the liberal left which, as seen in today's New York Times, says that billions of tax dollars will be shifted to the rich. Really? And just how did those billions of dollars get in the federal coffers in the first place? Well, with one percent of Americans paying forty percent of the personal taxes, the answer is easy. But, of course, if your goal is to punish those who make money while adding huge volumes of freebies in cash and benefits to those who have contributed nothing, then I guess you can come up with that conclusion. If you really think about it, however, openly and honestly, you won't come to that conclusion.
So lets look at individual income taxes in the proposal as they relate to the middle class American. The truth is that the proposal offers much more simplicity while also closing the wide number of tax brackets that are in the current system. Instead of seven brackets, the proposal calls for three, 10%, 25% and 35%. It also calls for an approximate doubling of the standard deduction, but there is still confusion regarding whether or not personal exemptions will remain. The death tax (inheritance tax) would be eliminated as would the hated alternative minimum tax and the 3.8% Obama surcharge.
Now many say that the inheritance tax has no bearing on middle class taxpayers, but tell that to the farmer who has seen his land jump dramatically in value as the urban landscape pushes farther into rural America. Should a farmer who has paid taxes all his life not be allowed to pass his property to his heirs? Well, when the price goes up that is often the end result when the children have to sell the land just to pay the tax bill. I for one am absolutely opposed to the idea that everyone needs to be equal in outcome. Outcome is determined by how hard you work and strive. It's never guaranteed in a free society.
And here's the final point. The proposal is just that, a proposal by the President to get Congress moving. We've talked about tax simplification forever and yet we only make it worse. Why? Because Congress likes the power of putting special favors in place for donors, a fact of political life which has grown the tax code to the point where no two accountants can come to the same exact figure when determining client liabilities. There is something dreadfully wrong with such a program and it's time to end this Congressional charade.
Just think, wouldn't it be nice to sit down one afternoon during tax season with little more than your W-2 forms and fill out a postage card sized return and get it in the mail pronto? That should be the goal of any tax reform. Tweak it, adjust where we must, but let's do this thing. Talk is cheap and we've been talking way too long. Let's just do it, America.