Thursday, February 28, 2008

They're Always After The Wealth Of The Middle Class

The Latest War Against Wealth & Freedom
You may not recognize his name immediately. Honestly, his name sounds like he might be a life insurance salesman from Peoria. But the last time I heard about Larry Summers, he had just been fired as president of Harvard. Larry was dismissed with cause because his ultra-liberal colleagues in the Harvard faculty suspected he was a "sexist pig." Unfortunately for him, this former Harvard president had the audacity to observe there are differences between men and women! Before that, Larry made a questionable name for himself as the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury during the first Clinton epoch (1993-2001). At the time, Larry called Americans who give up their U.S. citizenship allegedly to avoid taxes, "traitors." Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed and Larry had to apologize publicly for his reckless expansion of the word "treason." Indeed, the framers of the U.S. Constitution were themselves in full revolt against British taxation. The framers cited high taxes as a justification for their treason against the Crown. But then Democrats tend to be selective about American history before FDR and the New Deal.
Larry Summers Rides Again
Nowadays, Larry has turned up on the left-wing brie and chablis speech circuit. No doubt he's pulling down multi-thousand dollar fees, and repeating the discredited radical tax ideas that he and the Left have been chanting for years. He spoke recently at the Tax Council Policy Institute conference in Washington, D.C. In his speech, Larry said the tax system needs to be made "more progressive," (aka "soak the rich") and "fairer" (meaning "repeal the Bush tax cuts"). He said he wants to tackle the rising federal budget deficit. As a conservative, I agree with this new found concern about the budget deficit, but note: He said nothing about cutting spending.
Sorry, Larry But I'm Afraid You're Mistaken...Once More
And how would Mr. Summers, late of Harvard, improve the U.S. tax system? "By focusing on transparency and tax avoidance through increased enforcement." Apparently the traditional IRS gestapo mentality is insufficient to Larry's liking. He says tax reform is important, but what the IRS needs to do is go after U.S. persons and companies who avail themselves of legal tax avoidance by doing business in foreign countries - where taxes are lower or don't exist at all. The "sexist pig" from Harvard claimed, without offering any proof, that individuals and corporations currently "shelter about US$3 trillion." Note that Larry said "shelter." That's a bold implication that this impressive amount may be involved in tax evasion. And it's absolutely false. In fact, the great majority of this sum, (or any other sum you wish to pull put of thin air without a shred of proof), is involved in legal investments, banking and prudent asset protection plans such as trusts, annuities and insurance. It's called "globalism" Larry!
Remember: Old Larry Already Had to Apologize Once
So the man who called law-abiding Americans "traitors" suggested that major tax hungry welfare state nations need to create international tax laws to "cut back on tax havens and corporate income being shipped overseas."Not content with his expansive implications of worldwide tax evasion, he went on to blame offshore tax havens for poverty and "high levels of inequality" of income. His socialist solution? Redistribution of wealth through taxation! Why am I not surprised? Give that man the Huey P. Long Award for fiscal demagoguery. Dan Mitchell, senior fellow at the Cato Institute and co-founder of the Center for Freedom and Prosperity, also disagreed with Summers. He rightfully pointed out that efforts in Europe to "harmonize" tax rates really has meant ever higher taxes, while unilateral tax cuts in Europe, and in Ireland in particular, have had positive economic effects creating thousands of new jobs and boosting GDPs.Perhaps Larry should remember that next time he starts ranting falsely about areas he doesn't understand.

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