It’s pretty hard, trying to make sense of Liberal ideas. Not surprising to me, given how poorly Liberal ideas have performed historically. Especially where Money is concerned. After all, in 21st Century terms, American Liberalism is about Class Warfare, the notion that simply succeeding is wrong and should be punished. The whole tax structure in the United States is about hitting people harder, the better they do for themselves. If anyone thinks this makes sense, Howard Dean is counting on your vote. For anyone as unhappy with the notion of freedom only for people running on envy and bitterness as I am, this issue needs a closer look.
Nobody wants to be poor. And most of us are sensitive to the plight of the truly needy. But the truly needy are not defined by people complaining because they don’t want to work a job like regular people, who complain because the house they own isn’t nice enough to please them, or they feel entitled not to the car they have, but to a new car whenever they feel like it. It’s not a right to demand luxury, anymore than we owe cable television to prison inmates, or tax benefits to fringe groups simply for being a minority. It’s also not a right, to hate people simply for having money. The thing is, the “hate the rich” act has been around for a long time. People tend to miss the distinction between the American and French Revolutions; the American Revolution was begun in large part by businessmen who wanted the British Government to just let them live their lives and treat them as equals. The French Revolution was begun mostly by starving peasants, so enraged at the Aristocracy that they simply murdered them wholesale; all the myth about Napoleon was more about the tyrannic subversion of the people by the more unscrupulous manipulators in their midst. The American Revolution is about the Republican Party really, while the French Revolution is about the Democrats.
This is not to say that the Republicans have been pure and true to their promises at all things; ask any Libertarian about the Federal deficit and the last few Appropriations bills, and you’ll get a lot of reaction. But ever since John Kennedy was President, the Democrats have begun that long, deep slide into absolute abrogation of their duties, and never more than in a basic understanding of Economics.
A lot of commentors like to claim that a country’s money should be handled the same way one would handle a family’s money, but personally I’m not spending family money on armed forces, roads, and vaccine development for the Avian flu, so that comparison doesn’t really hold up. National revenue comes from taxes for the most part, and the question naturally should be focused on how much is the right amount. The latest budget is, if my memory is right, $2,600,000,000,000.00 - that’s one year of federal spending, folks. Dividing that by 300 million citizens would be a hefty share for each person, but that doesn’t recognize that we’re really talking about only 145 million taxpayers, so the punch is really more than twice as hard. And that does not include state, county, local, sales, and school taxes.
It’s time for us all to pay much closer attention to how much money is coming out of our paychecks, and where it’s going. Now may not be a good time to mention that tax money pays for not only Presidential candidates, but other federal office seekers as well.