Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Eliminate Tax Loopholes for the Rich -Starting with GM

I've been thinking a lot about our fearless leader's call for higher taxes on the rich. Close those "tax loopholes" that help them to avoid paying their "fair share".

Let's start here:

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Chevy Volt - Code Blue

The MSRP for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt in the U.S. starts at $40,280. Starts. That's the base model. For a car that goes (according to the EPA) 35 miles in all-electric mode. The total range is 379 miles (gas and electric).

Now, I don't know about you, but thirty five miles will not get me to work and back on any given day. Hell, some days, three hundred and seventy nine miles won't cut it either. So, who buys a car that is not reliable enough to get you to work and back on a single charge and is too small to be comfortable on a long trip?

It is ill suited, therefore to be one's primary or sole means of transportation, so, who is it that can afford a $40,000 subcompact to drive, aside from commutes or vacations? The rich. Anyone could buy a Chevy Cruze, which is a gas version of the Volt (only $23,000 cheaper), with more head room, legroom and a longer range. Who buys an expensive novelty car that's not very practical, just to prove a point, or make one feel better about themselves and the "environment"? This car has Ed Begley, Jr. written all over it!

So, if the rich, or at least, moderately well off, want to buy a Volt, let them! But, about those "loopholes"...

Quantifying just how much taxpayer money will have been wasted on the hastily developed Volt is no easy feat. Start with the $50 billion bailout (without which none of this would have been necessary), add $240 million in Energy Department grants doled out to G.M. last summer, $150 million in federal money to the Volt’s Korean battery supplier, up to $1.5 billion in tax breaks for purchasers and other consumer incentives, and some significant portion of the $14 billion loan G.M. got in 2008 for “retooling” its plants, and you’ve got some idea of how much taxpayer cash is built into every Volt.

But, wait! (As they say) There's more! Let's give every rich person who buys a Chevy Volt a $7,500 tax credit (read: "loophole"), so all the poor people who can't even afford a single new car can help subsidize the rich to buy an extra one!

Now, am I really incensed that the rich are taking advantage of this "loophole", not available to poorer folks? Not really. Even with a $7,500 tax break, the Volt is still overpriced and under featured. The sales numbers of the Volt, even after a flood of government money are anemic and somewhat pathetic.

So, what's the point? It's this: One man's loophole is simply another man's deduction. The demagoguery of using the term "loophole" to generate class envy, by implying an unfair advantage (in areas where you really just want to raise taxes) while ignoring similar tax breaks in areas you want to encourage, is hypocritical to say the least.

When this administration tells you they want to "close the loopholes" so that the rich "pay their fair share", what they are talking about is raising taxes, pure and simple. It has been noted that even taxing "the rich" at 100% and confiscating everything they have, would not solve the problems created by a spendthrift Congress, so "taxing the rich" is just a bit of class envy political theater, used to distract the voters away from the real problem by demonstrating that they are at least "doing something". (And sticking it to those rich guys, doggone it!)

And although Barack Obama has acknowledged that it is not a good idea to raise taxes during a recession, still, he has tried to 1) end the Bush across the board tax cuts last December, 2) eliminate "loopholes" like depreciation on private jets, and 3) calls for a quote unquote "balanced" approach that includes even more tax increases.

And speaking of "balance", if raising taxes in a recession is a bad thing, how is it "balanced" to do a bad thing with a good thing? This whole nonsense about "balancing" spending cuts with tax increases (What about five to one? Ten to one? Etc.) can be illustrated thusly: You've been buying clean ground beef and one day your butcher decides he's going to "balance" that by selling a little beef with e.coli mixed in.

Would this "balanced" approach be more palatable if the mixture is ten to one beef instead of five to one? Or would it still bad for you?

"Balance" is probably a word that "focus grouped" well, and Obama would much rather tell you he's taking a "balanced approach" than to tell you he's actually in favor of raising taxes during a recession. But don't buy it... and change your butcher!


  1. Worthless article...

  2. Food for thought...

    the top 10% of Americans control 80% of the countries wealth while the bottom half of the country controls only 2.5%!!!!

    Once you've digested that information in real terms and what it actually means, your entire post becomes complete garbage.

  3. "Worthless article... " -Worthless comment. No real point. No wonder you wouldn't put your name on it!

    "the top 10% of Americans control 80% of the countries (sic) wealth while the bottom half of the country controls only 2.5%!!!! "

    Gosh! A few more exclamation points and your comment would have had...more exclamation points.

    Maybe you should digest the fact that wealth does not fall like manna from heaven that those "greedy rich people" have been quicker to scoop up than the poor. Maybe some of those rich people actually did something to earn or create that wealth? Why should they not control that which they created? Do you not believe in the ownership of private property?

    You're big on class envy. We get that. If you ever want to have an intelligent discussion or an adult conversation, please feel free to post something other than your mind drool.

    And if you ever feel that your point of view is of any value to anyone other than yourself, feel free to chose a screen name and drop in for something other than a drive by libel.

    Some blogs won't post anonymous comments. I post them, but note that the caliber is generally inferior to those made by people willing to stand behind what they say with at least a pseudonym. Being anonymous need not be synonymous with being gutless.

    The only "garbage" on this page was posted by someone who is most likely an apostrophobic liberal.

    Food for thought: Apostrophobia (fear of placing apostrophes in the correct place) strikes a liberal every twelve seconds.


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