Why Is Spending a Four-Letter Word?04.17.09
States are going through their budgets right now trying to cut costs and balance the numbers before their fiscal year starts on July 1st. States like New York are looking to raise taxes on those who make over $500,000 while Iowa wants to cut taxes on the poor and middle classes. Naturally these changes will only go through if the Democrats can carry enough votes in both legislatures.
Georgia is taking a different approach. They cut education spending in order to lower its captial gains tax rate by half to 3%. Capital gains are profits made from selling a non-inventory product at a price higher than the one at which it was purchased – essentially, stocks, bonds, and other similar investments. Typically the poor have very few, if any, of these assets. The poor do, however, tend to have children who need higher quality education than they are receiving. While the conservatives piss and moan about Obama’s so-called socialism is taking away money from the rich to give to the poor, they fail to acknowledge how slashing education spending in order to cut taxes on those rich enough to send their children to the best private schools in the world is doing the same thing in the opposite direction.
Since when has robbing from the poor to give to the rich ever been solid governmental policy? This is the reason why Democrats took over in the past two elections. It turns out that majority of the American population aren’t in the top 2% of income earners after all. Shocking, I know. And conservative or liberal, some government spending can be good. I will always champion more spending for education and the arts. Nothing bad can come from keeping our youth competitive in the world arena and the best way to do that is to offer the best public education we can provide.
Not all spending is inherently bad. We have a government for a reason. This isn’t every man for himself. It’s frustrating that of course when you spend money it has to come from somewhere and that tends to be the rich. That’s just the price you pay for having the privilege of earning that kind of income within our society. We are not each totally autonomous.
Warren Buffett, billionaire and market genius, says it best:
“If you’re in the luckiest 1 percent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 percent.”