Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI), a RINO (Republican In Name Only), was nearly one heartbeat away from being the President of the United States, which is a truly sobering thought. Had Mitt Romney won the 2012 election, the Vice President of the U.S.A. would have been Ryan. He is the gentleman who just informed the nation that tax reform could take longer to arrive for Americans than the new healthcare bill. This is refreshing news in the sense that America is less likely to get a really rotten deal, something common from both sides of the aisle. It is awful when one considers that taxes are not nearly as complex as healthcare, however.
That is, unless you are the federal government. Those like Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) have been saying for a very long time that taxes should be able to be done on the back of an index card. Others have suggested adding a one or two cent tax on EVERYTHING and locking in that rate for seven to ten years. That would cover not only taxes, but healthcare too. Some even suggest abolishing the I.R.S. altogether, an idea that, in many ways, compliments the Constitution and reigns in government spending. The I.R.S. was supposed to be temporary, according to many who spoke in support of its implementation at the time. Uncle Sam has a nasty habit of breaking promises like that even to this day.
“The House has a (tax reform) plan but the Senate doesn’t quite have one yet. They’re working on one. The White House hasn’t nailed it down,” Ryan said. He added, “So even the three entities aren’t on the same page yet on tax reform.” Now while the White House can be forgiven for being slow to embrace anything that comes out of Washington with any haste or trust, Congress itself should certainly not be taking this long. How long have the GOP had to craft something fair and workable that does not take multiple reams of paper to print? If the government must insist on the “right” of taking money from the people, the text to do so does not need to be 74,608 pages long.
The whole mess began when certain perks were created that treated the very wealthy and the very poor much better than everyone else. Soon the very poor were even getting I.R.S. checks, even if they did not work or were disabled. While helping those in need is justified on a state level, our federal government often gives tax return payments to those who do not pay taxes. This has nothing whatsoever to do with tax collection, and yet, it is part of our tax code.
For the very rich, things get even worse! In many instances, two very odd things are working in tandem within our code regarding the upper brackets. To begin with, the rich are over taxed and the “mega-rich” in some instances are not. Those that are overtaxed are seeing amounts of more than 25% of their profits eaten in taxes, which is a federal overreach no matter how much money they have. This creates a need for this bracket’s lobbies and “special interest” groups to loom like specters around politicians and in various ways offer them money to help. These groups can not outright PAY the politicians, so there has to be legal ways birthed that allow this. These “new ways” ALSO get put into our tax code.
Once the poor, the rich, the lobbyists/groups, and the moneychangers have altered the code, then every politician in every state decides that the tax code can be tweaked to help meet a need that they have. Somehow this becomes acceptable for a tax code change (though it has NOTHING to do with tax collection either). With 50 states full of reaching politicians, several thousand MORE pages get added. All of this is just a small listing of the common misdeeds that corrupt our tax code. There are nuances, certain “breaks” for people/occupations, paid expenses, etc. that get much more detailed and yawn inducing.
The “loopholes” that we hear so very much about are created when something on page 600 conflicts with something else on page 5,699, for instance. There may be even more than two conflicts in such a massive set of rules. Those who can afford to spend six months doing taxes can play these loopholes against one another and legally choose which one gets them the most money. As the tax monster grows, so do the loopholes.
If this has made one’s head spin to absorb, just imagine how much bigger and more hideous it will be next year, or in ten years. If something is not done about this with greater haste, it won’t get done at all. That, at least, is the fear that many have because that is the history of Washington. Bush was not that different than Obama, just look at the examples of Saddam Hussien and Muammar Gaddaffi.
Trump is wise to not have just any status quo pleasing tax code tossed out in order to keep everyone placated. That is called prudence. He was elected for such careful deal making. Still, if reform takes too much time, more members of Congress will want to add their own exceptions to any changes. If Democrats stall this or try to tax us even higher so they can spend more, reform will get muddled in political wrangling. When that happens, nothing will ever change; in fact it will just get worse.
America wants a tax code that can be done in ten minutes. What percentage of what we have earned has Congress demanded from us? From there, we verify what we earned and we send in that amount. There are no deductions, no returns, no lobbying groups, and no perks. The person making $10.00 an hour pays the same percentage that a banker with great success on Wall Street pays. Done.
Either that, or perhaps we can abolish the I.R. S. in total. Placing a small tax on all things, literally an “ALL THINGS TAX,” of only a penny or two would solve the problem in total. Everyone buys “things” according to what they can afford, so the tax code is then fair since every purchase is a tax payment. The problem here would be keeping Uncle Sam at only two cents. Before long, he will be reaching into the cookie jar up to his elbows.
The other option is not allowing the federal government to collect ANY taxes, instead mandating that to the states who would pay the fed instead of the people. This latter idea will not prove popular with a dumbed down population who will be unable to understand its logic, however, so that can be all but ruled out.
Maybe utopia is not going to come from D.C. on this matter, for it rarely does for anything else, no matter what they promise us. That being said, there is no reason that America can not get a decent tax code overhaul with VASTLY smaller text within a workable time frame. If not, then God help us all once they get back to healthcare talks.