Pat Buchanan

Sean Connery, the first "James Bond," departed Britain in the 1960s for Spain and the Bahamas, writes Addison, "another spot with zero income tax." In the 1970s, his successor as 007, Roger Moore, also chose tax exile in Monaco. In those years of confiscatory tax rates in England, the Rolling Stones relocated to Southern France.

What does this teach us?

That socialism, the forced redistribution of income and wealth from those who produce it to those who do not, eventually forces a man to choose between himself and his family -- and his government.

Socialism creates and exacerbates a conflict in loyalties. A regime that takes three of every four dollars a man earns is an enemy of what that man works to accomplish for himself and his family.

Mitt Romney was castigated for keeping bank accounts in the Caymans, Bermuda and Switzerland. Yet countless U.S. companies leave profits abroad to evade U.S. taxes.

Californians flee to Nevada, Arizona, Idaho and Colorado to escape Golden State taxes. Are they disloyal to their home state, or are they doing what is right by their families, their first responsibility?

With federal income taxes on America's most successful rising today to almost 40 percent, New York City residents will also pay a top rate of 12 percent to the state and city plus a 9 percent sales tax on their purchases, plus payroll taxes for Medicare and Social Security, plus property taxes, auto taxes, gas taxes and cigarette taxes.

For many successful Americans, over half of all they earn is now taken by government. And reading The New York Times' year-end editorial, these may soon be seen as the good old days.

The Times urges Obama to consider sweeping new taxes to "reduce income inequality." Among the revenue raisers for which it urges consideration: Almost tripling the capital tax rate to 40 percent, capping deductions for high earners, restoring the estate tax to confiscatory levels, higher tax rates or surcharges on multimillion-dollar incomes and raising the corporate tax rate -- already the highest in the world.

"All that would be only a start," says the Times. A carbon tax, a value-added tax, a financial transactions tax should all be looked at.

Can a man love his country and hate its government? Of course. Ask Alexander Solzhenitsyn. Ask the patriots of '76.

This un-American and egalitarian fanaticism rearing its head today may one day force just such a question upon American patriots.

Pat Buchanan

Pat Buchanan is a founding editor of The American Conservative magazine, and the author of many books including State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and Conquest of America .
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