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Michele Bachmann provides plenty of food for thought whenever she opens her mouth. Her latest statements of mental fodder had to do with businesses and wage earners keeping all of the money they make, without paying any taxes.

If Bachmann and other anti-tax politicians really want to do away with taxes, then they ought to be willing to volunteer their time to run our government. After all, what they’re supposed to be doing is providing a public service. What better way to show their anti-tax, smaller government intentions than by going without a paycheck? (Or healthcare or pension or per diems, etc.?)

I’m trying to figure out where Bachmann thinks the money comes from for her paycheck. Taxes are the government’s form of revenue. It’s a basic economic concept, yet anti-tax politicians seem to have forgotten this – or are blindly ignoring the fact in order to sound good to the electorate. (They don’t sound good to me; they sound like they lack a firm grasp on reality.)

On MPR this morning political commentator Mark Shields wondered when a Republican politician is going to propose that rich people (those making over $250,000) no longer have to pay any taxes. Indeed, when? Why do most anti-tax politicians think that only the rich shouldn’t have to contribute to the American way of life … and then have the gall to whine that others who disagree with them are engaging in class warfare?

I’m going to leave my questions with the Elizabeth Warren quote currently making the rounds online via MoveOn.org:

There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You built a factory out there — good for you!

But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that maurauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory, and hire someone to protect against this, because of the work the rest of us did. Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea — God bless. Keep a big hunk of it.

But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.

If you do a search for that quote online, what you’ll find is a whole lotta anti-tax people responding to it with vehemence, ripping it apart rather than truly empathizing with the spirit of what Warren said. How very sad that our country has become infested with selfishness.

 

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