Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Distorting the Tax Policy Debate

George Orwell warned us about the use of “meaningless words” in politics, words that are endlessly repeated by sloganeering politicians until they have no meaning at all. Meaningless words certainly were on display during last week’s congressional debate over the latest tax bill.

Over and over again we heard trite, empty phrases like “tax cuts for the wealthiest 2%,” “tax giveaways,” “tax earmarks,” and “borrowing money to give to millionaires.” Time and time again the same falsehoods were presented as fact, and reported as such by a credulous media.

But all of these clich├ęs about taxes are based on the presumption that government has a right to all of your income, and so government “gives” you something when it allows you to keep a portion of that income. To this mindset, tax cuts represent a “cost” to government. After all, they argue, money that really ought to go to the most noble of purposes-- wealth redistribution via taxation--is being kept by greedy people and corporations who just don’t want to pay their fair share.

Far too many Americans truly believe that tax cuts represent a government giveaway, indistinguishable from an outright subsidy or entitlement payment. To combat this mindset, we need to be clear with our language.

Read the rest of why Ron Paul voted for the bill at his latest edition of

Daryl Luna
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Regular Columnist, THL
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