October 19, 2012

Answers I Wish I Had Heard (part 3)

This one's a no-brainer, for me anyway.  Many of my friends don't agree with me, yet, but I'm still working on them.

Mary asked a question about taxes:
Governor Romney, you have stated that if you're elected president, you would plan to reduce the tax rates for all tax brackets and that you would work with the Congress to eliminate some deductions to make up for the loss in revenue. Concerning these various deductions the mortgage deductions, the charitable deductions, the child tax credit and also the... education credits, which are important to me because I have children in college. What would be your position on those things, which are important to the middle class?
So, with this one, there was a pretty big outline by Romney of some stuff that doesn't add up according to just about everyone who's looked at the numbers. And of course, he made one of those fateful promises, like promising Jeremy a job:
And I will not - I will not under any circumstances reduce the share that's being paid by the highest income tax payers.  And I will not, under any circumstances increase taxes on the middle class.
He also said that his tax policy is about jobs.  Which is odd, because I thought his jobs policy was about jobs and his tax policy was about taxes. I was wrong:
And for me, this is about jobs. I want to get America's economy going again. Fifty-four percent of America's workers work in businesses that are taxed as individuals. So when you bring those rates down, those small businesses are able to keep more money and hire more people.
The President when it came to his turn, echoed his long-standing position that we need the wealthy to do more in addition to cutting spending. And I think he did a good job of pointing out to Mr Romney that as a businessman he'd not accept his own plan if it were presented to him, which was a good line.
If somebody came to you, Governor, with a plan that said, Here, I want to spend $7 or $8 trillion and then we're going to pay for it, but we can't tell you until maybe after the election how we're going to do it, you wouldn't take such a sketchy deal and neither should the American people, because the math doesn't add up.
So all of that was fun to listen to, and but here's the answer I wish I heard:

I appreciate that some people give to their religious organizations, but I don't believe that should give them a reduction in their income taxes. 

I also appreciate that lots of people support worthy causes - right, left and anywhere in between, but I don't believe that should give them a reduction in their income taxes. 

And I appreciate that some people prefer home ownership as part of their personal American dream, or adopt children, or have lots of medical expenses, or school vouchers, or somehow manage to meet one or more of the other deductions we allow under our tax code, but I don't think that should give them a reduction on their income taxes.

Why? Because deductions based on 'out-go' don't belong in an 'in-come' tax.

Now before you all go crazy, what I'm suggesting is a flat tax on income. Plain and simple.  No special interests get deductions, no special favors for people who manage to fit some convoluted, mysterious sentence in the tax code written by the one other guy who can also claim the same deduction. 

We level the playing field in the following two ways:
  • We develop a fair personal income tax rate, and you pay that percentage on your income - nothing more, nothing less. You know what you owe, plain and simple.
  • We stop taxing businesses as people -- because they ARE NOT people - we tax them as corporations.
  • We also work on the business income tax code, with major simplifications, rate reductions, and elimination of loopholes, so that we don't have huge corporations with mult-billion dollar profits paying $0 in taxes.
With a simplified personal and business tax code, everyone wins, not just homeowners, and sorry Mary, but not just parents like you, with kids in college.  

I'm no longer going to support penalizing people who don't fit the mold, who don't own homes, who don't have kids, who don't spend their income a certain way. Whether you're a person or a business, we're going to tax your income fairly, and you'll have more money to spend on whatever is important to you.

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