07.01.2008 0

A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats

  • On: 07/29/2008 16:01:11
  • In: Taxes
  • As John Kennedy once observed in defending his landmark tax cuts, “[A] rising tide lifts all the boats.” The idea is simple: general prosperity will enhance individual economic advancement. So, why is the Left intent on sinking the Ship of State with onerous tax hikes?

    The recent Democrat presidential debate in Philadelphia revealed the Left’s true take on this issue, when ABC’s Charlie Gibson noted that historically cuts in the capital gains tax proceeded to increase tax revenues:

    MR. GIBSON: “… You have however said you would favor an increase in the capital gains tax. As a matter of fact, you said on CNBC, and I quote, “I certainly would not go above what existed under Bill Clinton, which was 28 percent.” … It’s now 15 percent. That’s almost a doubling if you went to 28 percent. But actually Bill Clinton in 1997 signed legislation that dropped the capital gains tax to 20 percent.”

    SENATOR OBAMA: “Right.”

    MR. GIBSON: “And George Bush has taken it down to 15 percent.”

    SENATOR OBAMA: “Right.”

    MR. GIBSON: “And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased. The government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down. So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?”

    SENATOR OBAMA: “Well, Charlie, what I’ve said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness [emphasis added].”

    In other words, Barack Obama wants to increase taxes, not to raise more revenues for yet more spending – or because he necessarily thinks it would increase government revenues. He simply wants to stick it to the wealthy. As Larry Kudlow recently put it in his piece, “Why Not Blame Obama?”:

    “Obama’s real agenda is far-liberal left. It’s an ideology that places income redistribution above economic growth [emphasis added]. That’s his real message. And it’s the same one that sunk Carter, Mondale, Dukakis, Gore, and Kerry… Obama is aligning himself with the Democratic losers. And that will make him a loser as well.”

    You see, the Left’s class warfare dogma does not find room for the historical fact that lower tax rates mean accelerated economic growth and therefore increased revenues. This is akin to still declaring that the Earth is flat despite the mountains of evidence available. Mr. Obama’s “solution” to the evidence is to ignore it. His appeal is made on his own abstract definition of “fairness”, rather than actual evidence.

    In short, Obama’s definition of “fair” apparently means that wealth should be punished and investment discouraged.

    So, a rising tide does lift all boats. But, when you have a loose cannon on a rolling deck with an ill-informed economic neophyte seeking to seize the helm… Well, that’s a titanic problem.

    ALG Perspective: This portion of the recent Democrat debate was indeed quite revealing of the Left’s true motivations in raising taxes. Traditionally, the Left will argue against tax cuts because, so the argument goes, revenues will go down, as the Washington Post argued today in its editorial. When confronted with history, however, the Left tells the American people that there is an ideological imperative to redistribute wealth even if it hurts the economy and individual prosperity. And that kind of mindless class warfare is not only dangerous – it’s deadly.

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