If you're one of the gullible Obama supporters who's been asking that question, well, you're not only not getting one, but plans are in the works to tax everything you buy.
With budget deficits soaring and President Obama pushing a trillion-dollar-plus expansion of health coverage, some Washington policymakers are taking a fresh look at a money-making idea long considered politically taboo: a national sales tax.How about not spending us into a fiscal calamity? Has that thought occurred to any of the geniuses in Washington? We're facing trillion dollar deficits and we're going to pile on a trillion-dollar-plus health care scam.
Common around the world, including in Europe, such a tax -- called a value-added tax, or VAT -- has not been seriously considered in the United States. But advocates say few other options can generate the kind of money the nation will need to avert fiscal calamity.
Good luck with that.
"There is a growing awareness of the need for fundamental tax reform," Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) said in an interview. "I think a VAT and a high-end income tax have got to be on the table."Yeah, I guess just piling more taxes on us is considered fairness.
Of course we could just have a flat tax, but that would just be too simple for the solons in DC. Funny, but it sure seems to me the so-called progressives are awfully regressive.
A VAT is a tax on the transfer of goods and services that ultimately is borne by the consumer. Highly visible, it would increase the cost of just about everything, from a carton of eggs to a visit with a lawyer. It is also hugely regressive, falling heavily on the poor. But VAT advocates say those negatives could be offset by using the proceeds to pay for health care for every American -- a tangible benefit that would be highly valuable to low-income families.Whenever you see something called tax justice, run and hide.
Liberals dispute that notion. "You could pay for it regressively and have people at the bottom come out better off -- maybe. Or you could pay for it progressively and they'd come out a lot better off," said Bob McIntyre, director of the nonprofit Citizens for Tax Justice, which has a health financing plan that targets corporations and the rich.
The left will argue this is the magic elixir to fund all their socialist programs but it will never be offset by tax reductions elsewhere, no matter what they tell you. The greed in Washington is just too great.
And in a paper published last month in the Virginia Tax Review, Burman suggests that a 25 percent VAT could do it all: Pay for health-care reform, balance the federal budget and exempt millions of families from the income tax while slashing the top rate to 25 percent. A gallon of milk would jump from $3.69 to $4.61, and a $5,000 bathroom renovation would suddenly cost $6,250, but the nation's debt would stabilize and everybody could see a doctor.The problem there is the "rich" will still be demonized that they're not paying their "fair share" and the money will be frittered away, leaving us in the same bind we're currently in. So we'd just come full circle: paying even more federal, state, local and property tax while forking over another 10% minimum on every purchase. It's not the road to fiscal ruin, it's the expressway.
Lined with tolls, of course.