My blog contains a large number of posts. A few are included in various other publications, or as attached stories and chronicles in my emails; many more are found on loose leaves, while some are written carelessly in margins and blank spaces of my notebooks. Of the last sort most are nonsense, now often unintelligible even when legible, or half-remembered fragments. Enjoy responsibly.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Tax Investments

The tax which will be paid for the purpose of education is not more than the thousandth part of what will be paid to kings, priests and nobles who will rise up among us if we leave the people in ignorance -- Thomas Jefferson

Are Democrats going to raise taxes? Yes. Are Republicans going to raise taxes? Yes. The question is: what would you rather pay for? A war and tax relief for the upper class or healthcare and education? I have a feeling that most Americans will easily choose investing in our nation’s health and future over a war that we can’t quite explain and relief for our richest citizens. With Republicans recent history of spending large amounts of money without increasing the amount coming in (they haven’t been fiscally conservative in decades); the Democrats must take the path of responsible and convince Americans that taxes are a necessary burden to any civilized society.

Homework is burdensome too, but you have to do it if you’re going to learn anything. Exercise is burdensome, but you have to do it if you’re going to be in good physical shape. Taxes are necessary if we are going to make wise investments in our national infrastructure that will pay off for all of us years and years in the future. That includes investments in things like education and healthcare for those who can’t afford it. Education and healthcare are investments in people. They are wise investments because they give us an educated citizenry, and educated workforce, and a healthy and efficient workforce. Those are the practical reasons for taxes. Other reasons for taxes are public services -- like police and fire, disaster relief, and so on.

Those are the practical reasons for taxes, but there are moral reasons as well. Education and health are important factors in fulfillment in life, and this country is about fulfillment in life. There is a reason why the Declaration of Independence talks about the pursuit of happiness and links that to liberty. The reason is that they go together. Without liberty, there can be no fulfillment in life. Thus there are practical reason why it makes sense to understand taxation as paying your dues in a country where you can pursue happiness because there is liberty and freedom.

The Republican argument to this over the last decade has been to say taxes are bad, a national debt of $9 trillion is easily forgettable, and if we just give the rich a tax break, maybe they’ll spend some of it on the rest of you. So when you hear them talk about tax cuts, it’s not about tax cuts. They are about getting rid of social programs and regulations of business because that is where that money most come from. Do not buy into this taxes hype. Be proud of the country that you live in. Invest in our future. Pay your taxes and demand that your country spends your money in the way that you want. Tell them that you would rather pay for healthcare and education over the war and tax breaks for the rich.

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