It's another demonstration of the politicians' addiction to spending -- and how we are complicit. "One more infrastructure bill" or "this jobs plan" will jumpstart the economy, and then we'll kick our spending addiction once and for all.
But we don't stop.
For most of American history, government was tiny. But since Lyndon Johnson's Great Society and the promise that government would cure poverty, spending has gone up nonstop. This is not sustainable.
Progressives say: If you're so worried about the deficit, raise taxes! But it's a fantasy to imagine that taxing the rich will solve our deficit problem. If the IRS grabbed 100 percent of income over $1 million, the take would be just $616 billion. That's only a third of this year's deficit.
It's the spending, stupid.
Even if you could balance the budget by taxing the rich, it wouldn't be right. Progressives say it's wrong for the rich to be "given" more money. But money earned belongs to those who earn it, not to government. Lower taxes are not a handout.
That's the moral side of the matter. There's a practical side, too. Taxes discourage wealth creation.
Even if you think -- despite all evidence -- that government spends money more usefully than people in the private sector, there is a limit to how much government can tax before people work less or flee.
Progressives claim a small increase in tax rates won't stop the wealthy from producing. But some would stop. When the top marginal rate was 90 percent, actor Ronald Reagan worked just half the year. He said that woke him up to the damage that high taxes impose.
Higher taxes give rich people and politicians more reasons to collude. The rich make contributions, and politicians pay the rich back by giving them tax loopholes.
That's a big loss to America. That money and creative energy spent on figuring out taxes might have gone to build new products, make music, cure cancer or ... who knows what?
Politicians promise to balance the budget by getting rid of what is wasteful, redundant or unnecessary. There's plenty of that, but they have promised to eliminate it for years. They cannot. It's just in the nature of the beast. Centrally planned monopolies do things that are wasteful, redundant and unnecessary.
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