Another Modest Proposals: Tax Those Who Want to Pay

OK, I’ll admit I’m really beating a dead horse here but let me throw out another approach to this sales tax increase.

Why don’t we apply the sales tax increase in those counties where Democrats hold a voter registration edge? Based on Democratic leadership we know that raising taxes tends to be an acceptable approach to pay for government spending. I’m sure that these Democrat strongholds will readily accept paying more for more government.

Even better, why not apply the sales tax increase in those legislative districts where the State Representative(s)/Senators vote in favor of it? Let those who support it serve as the proxies for the voters who elected them and are willing to pay the price.

Of course this will never fly because they know just how the voters will react to higher taxes – they’ll lose their jobs next election. And even if it did get implemented that way, where do you think all the money will be spent? In those districts where the rep voted against it and there is no tax increase. The voters will certainly learn where those district boundaries are located.


Comments

  1. kralmajales says

    Silly argument DSW. Its called the freerider program. Let me give you a bit of an education here.

    First, there are these things called public goods. They are services that most people want and need but that would not be paid if left to a market. Markets fail to produce these goods because all benefit from them regardless of whether they pitch in to pay for them. The classic example is national defense. That is why you all still love taxes enough…you have to have enough taxes to pay for that (and that is among the most expensive items by far in our budgets). So, if I decided to defend our nation by buying a canon and putting it on my lawn…or an F16…you’d benefit from that. So why would you pay for it…and you wont…and if you are of good heart, what experience tells us is that you won’t pitch in near enough to provide enough of it.

    So, now that we have that down…and that people free ride. You can extend the public good argument to firefighting, to police, to schools, and to other things that markets produce that are called “externalities”. A positive externality is something that is a benefit produced for many that they got by virtue of someone paying for something in the market. Economic theory (but its theory) tells us that public dollars should subsidiz those activities so that more good is produced because its very efficient. A negative externality (pollution is a good example) is produced by the market and harms people who do not contribute to the production of that good. Negative externalities can be regulated…to be sure little of that is produced, or they can be taxed to force people to pay for the harm that they cause others when making chemicsls. Either way, govts are the only thing that will, in enough abundance, correct for these market failures.

    So back to your, sorry, ridicolous post. No, you dont get to free ride buddy. You get benefits of this society and you will be charged for them. You drive on highways, you consume the safety when you buy food and medicine everyday, you consume clean air from regulation, your pension, stocks, bonds, etc. are to be protected. When govt is absent, those protections do not exist because not enough people, out of the goodness of their hearts (like many here) would not contribute…but would take the gravy that they get for free.

  2. kralmajales – what i love about this topic is when you look at what really happens to federal taxes in AZ. For each $1.00 AZ sends to the feds it gets a $1.20 back in federal spending. Compare this to say, the supposedly horribly dependent state of CA that gets about $.78 back for each dollar it send to the feds. Who exactly is freeloading on whom?

  3. kralmajales says

    Well said Todd. And imagine your figures if we actually had a Senator that would attempt…even attempt…to bring tax dollars back to this state. I still find McCain to be worthless. He is consistently rated near to or last in delivering tax dollars to the state.

  4. Let’s use that same process. Those who want less state services and less education funding can have a reduction in school funding (including vouchers and tax grants). Those areas don’t need it and if they really want it they can fund it themselves. I’m actually with there DSW if that the case. All those Las Sendas and Red Mt. retireers I’m sure wouldn’t mind a bit the cuts.

  5. Kral,

    Been there. Done that. I am very much aware of the public good/freerider scenario. I’m assuming that you realize that the whole post was an exercise in absurdity. Passing legislation as described would never have passed constitutional muster. In fact you helped make my point from the other side of the coin.

    But I would be in favor of paying for only those services I utilize that are considered public goods. Us Northeastern Mesans seem to manage just fine on the services we do utilize.

  6. Roger,

    Wonderful. The citizens who don’t think they should pay for education shouldn’t be allowed to crowd ER rooms, doctors’ offices, dentist offices, hairstylist salons. You don’t want to pay for an educated society – then you don’t deserve to request the benefits of one either. I would love not to have to wait 2 days for an appointment at my doctor’s office.

  7. kralmajales says

    DSW,

    You make my point for me as well. You admitted that you wanted to pay essentially for the public goods you support. Once you go there then the whole argument changes. You can no longer be in favor of no taxes, no government. What we are left with then is a real argument (not about the evils of govt…you support it), but about where we spend our tax money and on what. Once we are there, you will find a lot of dems, like me, that support police, but also support public education (a public good as well). Most would start making the distinction between the need to spend billions on a wall at the border and taking a smidgen of that to help get better schools and teacher…and maybe even more scholarships for college.

    When the bs “govt is bad for you” argument and “low taxes are worse than no taxes” go out the window then we get better leaders in the state senate and house that can make those distinctions and start thinking of govt as a necessary part of our society.

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