Sunday, March 9, 2014

Redistribution of Wealth

Every penny, every cent, every sou, every shilling, every yen that is ever taken by taxation at any time in history and anywhere in the world is a “redistribution of wealth.”  NEVER is a single penny taken in tax NOT a redistribution of wealth.  Whether it is taken in the form of a sales tax, an income tax, a property tax, an excise tax or a luxury tax, every cent that gets taken by government will be “redistributed.”  To government workers who handle the collection and distribution of tax monies, to other government workers, to construction teams, to doctors and hospitals, to teachers, to police and fire-fighters, to sanitation workers, to mass transit workers, and, yes, to thieves.  You may indeed be a beneficiary of your own tax dollars, but that benefit will rarely be the same as what you paid in taxes.

Republicans use this phrase when they want to undermine Democrats' attempts to raise taxes on the wealthy, and redistribute tax monies DOWN, from the wealthy to the middle-class and the poor.  Rarely if ever do Democrats charge Republicans with the same crime when they want a tax cut for their wealthy donors, even though it is equally true, as it redistributes tax monies UP, from your pay-check to the brokerage accounts of the wealthy.

The main questions we should ask about our tax bills are: “what programs and what people will benefit from my taxes?” and “are others more fortunate than me paying their fair share?”   Taxes are always a redistribution of wealth.  The only crime is when they are redistributed UP (as they were in the story of Robin Hood, where the poor had to pay taxes to benefit the king and the nobility).