American Elephants

Big Government, And Why It Doesn’t Work. by The Elephant's Child

There is a mindset in politics, everywhere, that if we just had more encompassing governments, not so many small jurisdictions wanting to quarrel with each other, with more enlightened, well educated people in charge, then there would be more peace, fewer wars. Everybody would get along. World Peace.

The enlightened folks in charge would work out the problems in their meetings — but we’ve tried that. There’s the United Nations and the European Union, and all sorts of humanitarian organizations, and unsurprisingly– new scandals reported, the latest with Oxfam. The problem seems to be that non-governmental organizations are, by definition, unaccountable to the public that funds them. Zero Hedge reported on “Humanitarian Aid becoming a Euphemism for Oppression.”

But the drive continues for more government to be managed and controlled by the more qualified folks with more important degrees from more important schools. ( Usually promoted by those with more important degrees from more important schools) Why, in the wake of all the failures of larger and larger organizations would anyone think world government a dandy idea? It really is pretty clear that the best government is the smallest one, closest to the people. At least you can fight it out in person.

Democrats are usually obsessed with the idea that what Republicans do when they attain power is to give big tax cuts to the Rich, who don’t need tax cuts, because they are rich, and it’s just Republicans paying off their undeserving supporters. Democrats believe that you win elections and get power (their only goal) by giving goodies to the people whose votes you want. They simply do not understand that when Republicans give tax cuts, they give them to everybody, because people who pay way less taxes get smaller tax cuts. It is called Capitalism, and is the glory of a free people following their own dreams.

When you cut the taxes of business owners, they have more money to hire, invest, grow and invent—which they do, and as a result the economy grows and more people have jobs, and the nation prospers. Democrats are congenitally unable to understand this simple idea, perhaps because they are so busy hating the captains of industry and “the rich”. You will notice that members of Congress who become very rich do not complain about their tax cuts, but take an important vacation junket to some interesting foreign capitol where they can write off the trip by meeting with some officials.

President Trump may not always explain tax cuts in the most favorable terminology, but he has the right instincts, and knows what he is doing. Just look at the decline in the unemployed, and in the users of food stamps. I’m sure Democrats would be astonished to learn that people really do like to work at an honest job, and earn their keep, and they don’t like to be on food stamps. They appreciate the help when they need it, but the need embarrasses them.

Experience is a Great Teacher, But We Have To Pay Attention! by The Elephant's Child

Getting regulations right is always hard, and usually the fewer regulations imposed, the better.  Some regulation is obviously needed, or we would all crash into each other in intersections.  If budgets are tight, it’s often easier to raise taxes than to cut expenses. That’s why we admire New Jersey’s Governor Christie so much. Legislators who do not adore increased revenue are few and far between.

In January, Oregon voters decided that it was a good idea to raise taxes on (are you surprised?) the rich to increase revenue.  Measure 66 passed 54–46 on January 26, to increase funding for “education, health care, public safety and other services.”  (I’ll bet they said “for the children” too).  It increased the rates from 9% to 10.8 % on single filers earning $125,000 to $250,000 a year, and on joint filers earning $250,000 to $500,ooo.

For individuals pulling down more than $350,000 a year and families making more than $500,000, the rate went up 2 percentage points.  A pure envy tax.

The ballot initiative was pushed by aggressive public employee unions.  The supporters spent $6.9 million campaigning for Measure 66 and for Measure 67 telling voters that 66 alone would raise an additional $472 million.

Envy doesn’t pay.  Tax revenues went down.

Oregon’s revenue forecast predicted that tax collections through July 2011 will come in $577 million short of the budgeted amount, because of lower-than-expected personal income-tax collections.

“Capital will go where it is wanted and stay where it is well treated.  It will flee from manipulation or onerous regulation of its value or use and no government power can restrain it for long.” (Walter Wriston: The Twilight of Sovereignty)

In New Jersey, from 2004 to 2008, $70 billion in wealth left.  Moved.  They fled a tax code that punished success.  Same thing happened in Maryland.  Millionaire tax — they lost one-third of their millionaires on their tax rolls, and tax collections were $100 million less than before the tax was raised.

Governor Christie is proposing a sweeping privatization effort in New Jersey, and vetoed, in May, the legislature’s income-tax surcharge on millionaires, and the legislature could not override the veto. Taxing wealth and productivity may sound like a good idea.  The evidence proves otherwise.

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