Fix the Tax Code—in One Easy Step

So here we go again: it’s Tax Day in America.
 
The weekend news broadcasts were flooded with tax stories.
One stated that Americans spend billions of dollars just to fill out their tax forms each year.
In another story, a reporter interviewed people in the line at the post office on Saturday.
Another spoke of how Americans spend an average of 52 hours— just to fill out their tax forms.
That’s a whole lot of time spent just to hand over money to the federal government.
 
For decades Americans have grumbled, swallowed hard, and sent in their taxes on the National Day of Doom, April 15th.
 
Over the last 20 years, economists Thomas Sowell  and Walter Williams have each had easy ways to simplify the Tax Code. 
 
Dr. Sowell suggested making Tax Day the same day as Election Day. That would force Congress to simplify it.
 
Dr. Williams suggested a 10% flat tax. He explained that “if 10% of my income is good enough for the Methodist church, it should be more than enough money for the federal government.” 
 
The problem with tax reform is that your friendly neighborhood congressman really has no interest in simplifying the tax system. Each year, the federal government sucks more than $4 trillion dollars out of American taxpayers. And even with all that money, Congress still spends more than it receives. Your congressman is not giving up that much money, no matter how much suffering you do to hand it over to him.
 
If Americans are really serious about fixing the confusing, frustrating, expensive, and headache-inducing tax forms, there is a simple solution:
Require ALL elected officials (the president, vice president, senators, congressman, and all their staffs), and congressionally appointed officials (including the Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of Commerce, the head of the Federal Reserve Board, the head of the Congressional Budget Office, the Secretary of Defense… ALL one of them with any fiduciary responsibility) to fill out their tax returns: ON CAMERA.
 
Then make them publish it on YouTube.
 
Every one of these government officials can have an accountant, a lawyer, or even their own mom sitting in the room, helping them fill out their tax return. But they MUST do the entire process on YouTube.
 
I promise you that real Tax Reform and Simplification would be passed by both houses of Congress and signed by the President within a single month.
–The Beltway Bandit
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Trump! Trump! Trump!

A breath of fresh air!

A man who speaks his mind!

A man of conviction—whoa—wait a minute…

 

These three comments typify those which have flooded internet message boards since early last Summer. While I nodded to myself over most of those I’ve read everywhere, the last one stopped me cold.

You can say a lot of things about why Trump is wildly popular; but “a man of conviction” is absolutely not one of them.

The big reasons Trump is popular are clear:

First, he believes in America, and obviously loves his fellow Americans.

Second, he believes in winning.

 

Ever since President Reagan left the White House 27 years ago, there has not been a single Republican who has proudly (and boastfully) projected these two qualities. Except for Jesse Helms, every congressman, senator, governor and presidential candidate has always tip-toed through the minefield of interviews with the two national overlords of public opinion: the New York Times and the Washington Post.

Because of these two publishers’ clout in manipulating what is broadcast on the Nightly News, every Republican has spent these past three decades hunched over in fear of being targeted as an enemy of what those two papers find distasteful, wrong, or bad about America. Once challenged, they never fight back. Americans have noticed this persistently cowardly presentation of what they believe, and have spent election after election fighting when their candidates won’t.

Trump does the direct opposite. He bashes the News Media. He talks back to a reporter who tries to talk down to him, and he plays the TV Media like an expert violinist. Americans have noticed, and enthusiastically support him because of it.

My favorite Trump success is his daily stabs at political correctness. Watching reporters and pundits clutch their chests in fabricated outrage is becoming my favorite entertainment!

But Trump should be running as a Democrat. He believes in big government, has funded and voted for liberal causes his entire career, and is VERY shaky on his belief in private property and more important, his constitutional perception of eminent domain.

Watch the Pixar movie “Up!” The first 15 minutes are taken directly from a case where Trump sued an old lady in 1993 to force her out of her home in Atlantic City, New Jersey so he could build a giant new building. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vera_Coking).

He beat her too. Does anybody think that case won’t come up in the General Election?

Worse than that, he continues to demonstrate his comfort with Huge Government.

Just this morning he told ABC News that while ObamaCare “is a disaster!” he would fix it: with a different government program that works. We’ve been watching them tinker with Big Government Healthcare in Europe for 60 years now. It doesn’t ever get any better, just more expensive. But because he “cares about people”, Trump’s health-care-bureaucracy will be more efficient than Obama’s. Does anyone who has ever filled out all those government-required-forms at the hospital really believe that?

If Trump ran as a Democrat, he would have quickly eliminated Clinton as a viable candidate last September. He would have kept Sanders in the race just to make him look stupid. He would be drawing 85% of Democrat voters, with gushing praise from the Democrat Party’s pundits. Instead, he has sparked their sheep-like wrath, because with Democrats it’s always tribe above everything else.  He would also have at least 40% of Republican voters, because of his unabashed candor. Unlike any candidate in either party, he has drawn support from blue collar workers, the chronically underemployed, and even blacks.

Who was the last politician who achieved such broad support?

But as a Republican, no one knows who he really is, because he has never supported any constitutional cause, either with his money or his mouth.

As one Republican supporter explained: “We like him because talks American!”

Except for Herman Cain, Sarah Palin and Ben Carson, who else has done that?

The other reason Trump is popular is because Congress has ceded most of its power to huge federal agencies to do its job.  Read the soon-to-be-published book Bureaucratic Bombs to see how bureaucrats spend their time writing rules to micromanage the lives of everyday Americans; something forbidden in the Constitution. Will Trump accelerate this trend like Obama, or will he halt the arbitrary bureaucracy, call it what it is and eliminate this “rulemaking”, as bureaucrats like to call it.

I’ll bet he will do just as Obama taught him: continue to bypass Congress, write Executive Orders to get what he wants done, and then go on The View and blame “those stupid congressmen” for not understanding what Americans really want.

We’ve spent the last 7 years watching this game. When Trump continues to do the same thing, we will be firmly down a road which permanently makes Congress a secondary force to the power of the President.

And let’s not forget the end game here: getting Ted Cruz and Rand Paul appointed to the Supreme Court.

These two men are powerful advocates for The United States Constitution, and will be passionate defenders of it against the anti-Constitutionalists now serving on the bench.  Does anyone in America really think Trump will appoint a pro-Constitution justice to the Supreme Court?

I like Trump—a lot. I absolutely love his chutzpa!

But we’ve seen this movie before—three times, in fact.

There have been popular uprisings around the United States over the past two decades. The first time was in Minnesota. People were so frustrated at their unresponsive state government that they elected an outsider and complete political novice, Jesse Ventura.

The second uprising was in California, when they elected Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The third was in New York City. Not so much a popular uprising so much as a manipulation of the “conservative” label. Billionaire Michael Bloomberg got himself elected by being the only candidate on the Republican side of the ballot, and then flooding the city with campaign cash.

But in all three cases, the well-known-celebrity talked a great can-do speech swimming in common sense. Once elected, all three forgot what they promised, and were complete disasters.

Like Trump, Ventura trash-talked his opponents, and ended up a loud-mouthed embarrassment.

Like Trump, Schwarzenegger was a well-known celebrity who, once elected, caved to the unending stampede of liberal rants and union demands. He was a lame-duck eunuch halfway through his first year in office.

And Bloomberg—my goodness. He spent his entire term micromanaging New York: you couldn’t own a gun, couldn’t smoke, shouldn’t drink soda, shouldn’t use salt, shouldn’t drive a car…

Meanwhile, he pretty much ignored constitutional voting violations all over his jurisdiction, yet jumped to the TV every time there was a terrorist attack so he could blame Americans.

People got sick of Ventura’s public tantrums real fast; of Schwarzenegger’s tough guy image even faster; and of Bloomberg’s micromanaging in a New York Minute.

How it starts is how it goes, and I see Trump as the billionaire blend of all three of these men. Each one is famous, rich and loud.

And not one has a conviction in his body.

–The Beltway Bandit