Have you ever gotten a bill from the phone company or electric company that made you almost fall down dead from shock?
Most of us have been the victim of a billing error. And though it’s not always easy to get it corrected, in the end it all works out. And of course, sometimes there is no error in the bill and we have to struggle to pay it. In these cases we’re usually a lot wiser about using the product or service in the future.
That’s exactly how I feel when I consider my tax bill. There must be some mistake! But there is no mistake. The federal government consumes over 20 percent of our GDP gross domestic product. And when you add up all the other state and local taxes, property tax and sales tax and what not, pretty soon it’s clear that more than 40 percent of our income goes straight to the government, most to the feds.
If we overspend in our personal budget, we feel our own pain. We pay the bill and we change our behavior. But this is about the politics of careerism. We send folks to Washington who say they’ll cut taxes, but when they get to Washington they won’t let go of the power that comes with spending our money.
President Clinton actually had the audacity to say that a one-percent reduction in spending was “reckless.” It’s time for a change. Time for a few battalions of citizen legislators who understand that cutting at least one paltry percent of discretionary government spending makes a lot more sense then adding to our already outrageous tax bill. It would be nice if we had a few bucks left to pay the rent.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.