It’s amazing how often an absurd idea becomes an article of faith among Democrats, who then – with the help of their puppets in the media – repeat it over and over again. Not too long ago, seemingly intelligent adults believed that playing dodge ball at elementary school was the causing undo harm to the psyche of American youth. Today’s nightmare – and if you believe our President, the reason for the budget imbalance – is corporate jets. Obama has become so fixated on the subject that he mentioned it six times – yes, six times! – in one press conference.
The President seems to have a short memory. In 1991, George H.W. Bush mistakenly agreed to a 10% luxury tax on autos, furs, boats, and jewelry. The tax brought in almost no revenue while destroying thousands of good manufacturing jobs, including 480 well-paid positions at the Beech Aircraft Company. The tax, which some propeller-head economists projected would collect $6 million every year, actually brought in the princely sum of $53,000. Fortunately, a wiser Congress repealed the tax shortly thereafter.
President Obama and his over-educated cronies think that potential jet buyers will behave in the same manner after the depreciation schedule for these non-commercial jets is revised. That is never true. This change will bring in nowhere near the $3 billion over ten years that its proponents claim. The supporters of this ludicrous proposal never once considered the revenue lost as a result of decreased economic activity, the (predictable) reduction in manufacturing and service jobs in the airline industry, and higher costs for unemployed workers.
Then there’s the budgetary practice of projecting revenues for ten years, which leads many people to speculate whether they have Sister Anasztazia and her Ouija Board locked in a basement somewhere. These people really think we should fall for this fantasy – as if anyone knows what economic conditions will be like ten years from now. After all, Congress has this bad habit of changing tax laws and budget priorities every year, so what good are these ten- year projections anyway? The federal government rarely even get one-year budgets accurate! This could be vastly improved if the government adopted zero-based budgeting, in which every agency and department starts from zero each year. Right now, it’s “We spent $10 billion last year, so give us $11 billion this year. Don’t worry, we’ll spend it responsibly.”