Poor Joe The Plumber. All he wanted to do was make an informed decision in this year’s election. So, he asked Barack Obama whether or not Obama’s proposed tax plan would affect him if he should buy a business that makes $250,000 – $280,000 a year. It’s a normal question for today’s taxpayer worried about the rising costs of living. Everyone’s freaking out about taxes these days – even my hubby, who is scared spitless by McCain’s proposal to tax health benefits paid by his company.
Unfortunately, Obama was without his teleprompter, and said something that triggered massive alarms throughout the land. Here is the whole interview without all of the editorial commentary that’s been added to it. The key moment is at 4:46.
Let’s leave the question of socialism aside for a moment. Here’s what I think about Obama, McCain and taxes: Every single President coming into office during a time of economic trouble has raised taxes. Remember George H. W. Bush in 1988? “Read my lips: No new taxes.” As soon as he saw the utter destruction Reagonomics had wrought upon the Treasury, he raised taxes – but not enough to turn the economy around. So Bill Clinton raised taxes again – hugely – when he came into office. It took two years, but finally enough money was raised to begin reversing the disastrous effects of 12 years of “voodoo” economics. And surprisingly enough, when President Clinton left office, the Treasury was overflowing and the economy was booming. Amaaaaazing!
In my opinion, when the new President takes office, taxes are going to be the least of our problems. Cost-of-living increases and joblessness are going to be far larger issues. I lived through the Carter era, and I think it’s going to happen again. Nonetheless, I am certain that my taxes will be raised by either Obama or McCain. As Democratic Presidential nominee Walter Mondale said in 1984,
By the end of my first term, I will reduce the Reagan budget deficit by two-thirds. Let’s tell the truth. It must be done, it must be done. Mr. Reagan will raise taxes, and so will I. He won’t tell you. I just did.
You tell ‘em, Walter! Buckle up, America: the taxman cometh. I can’t imagine any other outcome, especially with the majority Democratic Congress that will be taking power.
The strange thing about Obama’s statement is that he should have known better. The purpose of taxes in a capitalist system, which the last time I checked we still had (barely), is not to re-distribute wealth, but to raise revenue for the government so that it has enough money to function properly. In addition, the socialist idea of wealth re-distribution is extremely unpopular in mainstream America, so you would think that a candidate for President would avoid even the appearance of favoring such a thing. But since Barack Obama has been surrounding himself with a cocoon of left-wing radicalism in Chicago, it seems he doesn’t understand either of those things.
True to form, Obama’s supporters cannot acknowledge the fact that The One made a gaffe of epic proportions. A distraction is needed to take our minds off the fact that Obama appears to favor socialism over capitalism. So, they do their master’s bidding, and swarm upon Joe like the rabid animals they are – all with the obliging aid of the corporate media, and as an added bonus, screaming “RACISM!” all the way.
I’ll tell you plainly that this type of hysteria scares the shit out of me. For Gawd’s sake, the guy just asked Obama a standard conservative question about his taxes. The answer was: “Yes, under my plan, your income taxes will increase about 3% if you make over $250,000 a year. You may have some offsets in the form of a tax cut on health care and the capital gains tax, however.” The end. Was Obama obligated to say the words “spread the wealth around?” No! Why did he, then? I think that’s a very valid question.
Is this what we have to look forward to in an Obama administration? Any type of dissent or questioning is not permitted, especially if it exposes any weakness in him?
No wonder the Senator from Illinois voted “yes” on FISA. Warrantless wiretapping just makes it so much easier to root out and expose the dissenters, doesn’t it?
Cross-posted at The Confluence