Mourning the death of the American idea

I’ve been really busy lately with work and probably will be for the next several days, so my posts will be few and far between. I did, however, want to share this article by Mark Steyn.

I disagree with my fellow conservatives who think the Obama-Pelosi-Reid-Frank liberal behemoth will so obviously screw up that they’ll be routed in two or four years’ time. The President-elect’s so-called “tax cut” will absolve 48 percent of Americans from paying any federal income tax at all, while those that are left will pay more. Just under half the population will be, as Daniel Henninger pointed out in the Wall Street Journal, on the dole. By 2012, it will be more than half, and this will be an electorate where the majority of the electorate will be able to vote itself more lollipops from the minority of their compatriots still dumb enough to prioritize self-reliance, dynamism, and innovation over the sedating cocoon of the nanny state. That is the death of the American idea — which, after all, began as an economic argument: “No taxation without representation” is a great rallying cry. “No representation without taxation” has less mass appeal. For how do you tell an electorate living high off the entitlement hog that it’s unsustainable and you’ve got to give some of it back?

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11 Responses to “Mourning the death of the American idea”

  1. Kansas Bob says:

    “while those that are left will pay more”,

    Hmmm.. an empowerment of the majority? A bit of a reversal.. hard to feel bad for those who have been in power for so long and have benefited so much from the labor of middle class America?

    Possibly people would feel differently if we hadn’t witnessed the greed of executives at Enron, WorldCom and executives of many other “American” companies that seemed to believe that it was their job to export our jobs while their imported labor from other countries.

    Possibly sentiments will change and things will swing back when American workers are helped? Corporate executives can really help in this change if they want to.. or they can just squeal like pigs :)

  2. casey says:

    Wow. Class warfare and stealing from the “rich” to give to the “poor.” That just doesn’t sound like America to me, Bob.

  3. Kansas Bob says:

    Maybe not.. but are we all about stealing from the poor to give to the rich?

  4. Kansas Bob says:

    Adding to that thought – ever wonder why workers needed labor unions?

  5. casey says:

    How are we as a nation stealing from the poor? If you’re so concerned about greedy CEOs, then start lobbying for more severe penalties for unethical behavior. You don’t correct the wrong by punishing success and committing another wrong. Taxes should not be a way of getting back at other people. It shocks me that some people see it that way.

  6. Kansas Bob says:

    How are we stealing from the rich Casey? Since the inception of our federal tax system we have always had a graduated system of taxation.

    What would you define as unethical CEO behavior? Maybe you forgot that the government was forced to stick it’s nose into the behavior of executives when it created the National Labor Relations Board to insure that the American worker was treated fairly. CEO’s have been fighting it ever since. In some sense CEO’s have created the need for an inflated government.

  7. casey says:

    How are we stealing from the “rich”? Let’s see. By forcing them to pay for services that are used by other people. We’re taking money out of their pockets and giving it to others. I put rich in quotes, because not all these people are necessarily rich when you get right down to it.

    I’m not going to defend CEOs. I don’t know any. I will repeat, however, that taxes should not be a form of punishment. Not everyone who makes over a certain amount of money is engaged in unethical behavior. Taxing hard workers and using that money to benefit those that don’t work as hard or don’t work at all is wrong, any way you cut it. We should not be punishing success in the United States of America. When we go down that road it will indeed be the death of the American idea.

  8. Kansas Bob says:

    It seems that you do not support a graduated system of taxation.. not much I can say except that this is the way that our country has taxed for a very long long time.

  9. casey says:

    No, actually I don’t. Doesn’t seem very capitalist to me. I think the system has to be reformed, and going socialist is not the best solution for anyone in the long run.

  10. Dana says:

    Actually, an inflated government benefits larger corporations. The regulations and tax burdens are getting to be high enough that new companies without the capital are at a severe disadvantage, making it unlikely that competition will enter the market.

    And with governmental power also comes profitability of lobbying. You don’t need to go to the marketplace to compete when you can get what you want through legislation. If the government didn’t have the power to change the playing field, we’d see a lot fewer dollars spent trying to sway politicians who couldn’t do anything to benefit large corporations anyway.

    And making a million dollars or however much is not stealing from the poor, nor making your wealth on the backs of anyone else. Tax them out of existence and see how many investors we have left or how many jobs we have to go around.

  11. casey says:

    Thanks for the comment, Dana. I fixed the typo for you.