Bold Colors Blog

Stickin’ it to the libs, one day at a time

Posts Tagged ‘Taxes’

Victor Davis Hanson on why Wall Street is still worried

Posted by Liberty on March 12, 2009

Obamafusion

Just a few of the money lines:

“A redistributive economy in which government ensures an equality of result is Wall Street’s worst nightmare.”

And:

“Given the amount of debt the US is incurring (and the decades needed to pay it off), given the loose talk about the ‘rich’, and given the rumors about nationalization, investors are unsure whether the United States will remain a safe haven for investment, or even offer a climate for profit-making, since it would either be taxed to the point of seizure, or its beneficiaries would be culturally and socially demonized.”

And:

“There is much talk about Obama merely returning to the tax rates of the Clinton administration. But that is misleading for two unfortunate reasons: (1) Clinton did not tamper with FICA ceilings and other deductions in addition to the income tax hikes; (2) he had spending limits imposed by the post 1994-Congress, so at least his income tax increases led to a balanced budget. But Obama is not only raising taxes far higher in aggregate than did Clinton with the present trillion-some spending hikes, but ensuring that we will still end up with astronomical deficits. So we get the tax hikes of Clinton — but without the balanced budgets; and we get far higher deficits than under Bush — but sans the tax cuts.”

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Liberalism, Obama, Redistribution of wealth, Social engineering, Socialist economics, Taxes | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The legislature just doesn’t get it!

Posted by Liberty on March 7, 2009

From Joe Turner’s Political Buzz, here’s a nice list of the tax increases that the Washington State Legislature is considering. 

Here are tax hike options for lawmakers (and voters?)

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Social engineering, Socialist economics, Stupid legislation, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Powerful forces at work to increase your taxes–public employee unions

Posted by Liberty on February 19, 2009

About that Looming Tax Hike

Posted in Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Taxes, Union Thuggery, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Where’s Washington State headed?

Posted by Liberty on February 18, 2009

The Decline of California

“The Golden State — which a decade ago was the booming technology capital of the world — has been done in by two decades of chronic overspending, overregulating and a hyperprogressive tax code that exaggerates the impact on state revenues of economic boom and bust. Total state expenditures have grown to $145 billion in 2008 from $104 billion in 2003 and California now has the worst credit rating in the nation — worse even than Louisiana’s. It also has the nation’s fourth highest unemployment rate of 9.3% (after Michigan, Rhode Island and South Carolina) and the second highest home foreclosure rate (after Nevada).

Roughly 1.4 million more nonimmigrant Americans have left California than entered over the last decade, according to the American Legislative Exchange Council. California is suffering more than most states from the housing bust, but its politicians also showed less spending restraint during the boom.”

Please note that California has both a sales tax and an income tax.  Ask a Californian how that’s working out for them.

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Social engineering, Socialist economics, Taxes | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

State income tax analysis from EFF

Posted by Liberty on February 18, 2009

Will state income tax appear on November 2009 ballot?

We know that state senator Rosa Franklin [a Democrat…who else?] has again introduced her perennial bill that would impose a state income tax.  Anybody who would believe that a state income tax would be a straight across trade for the way we pay into the state coffers now is deceiving themselves.  Any alteration in taxes proposed by our dear Washington State Democrats will result in a raw deal for the taxpayers and more revenue for state government. 

It is my understanding that this measure would be have to be voted upon by us little people but sometimes, I have my doubts that my fellow Washingtonians could choose right.  At any rate, the better informed Conservatives are, the better we will be able to articulate our opposition to any more taxes.

“The bill has three major fiscal reform elements that would drastically change the state’s revenue structure. First, it proposes a graduated state income tax on individuals and businesses (except corporations). Second, it eliminates the state portion of the property tax. Third, it reduces the state portion of the sales tax from 6.5 percent to 3.5 percent.”

And a few points against it from the EFF blog:

“Legislators add the income tax as another category, thus allowing tax-creep in every category. 

The proposed income tax adds another layer of complexity and cost for citizens.

It would dramatically increase taxes for people who do not own a home or have children.

It would punish those who succeed financially by taking larger portions of their income as it increases.”

The EFF blog [www.libertylive.org] has details about the proposed income tax rates and also a few scenarios that help illustrate how an income tax would impact people.  Here’s a thought I’d like to throw out there.  Will this finally be the year?  Has the time finally come?  Are we here in Washington going to finally hit the breaking point as far as taxes are concerned?  I propose a Boston Tea Party-esque tax revolt.  Anybody in?

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Conservatism, Educate yourself, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Social engineering, Socialist economics, Stupid legislation, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Democrat Rosa Franklin has introduced a state income tax bill…what’s different about this year?

Posted by Liberty on February 14, 2009

Washington state income tax could raise $6.67 billion in 2012

“Is the income tax proposal for real this year? Every year, state Sen. Rosa Franklin, D-Tacoma, introduces a bill calling for a state income tax. Hers often is the only name listed as a sponsor. Such is the case this year. She dropped the bill Jan. 13.

The real interesting thing is that a fiscal note was completed on Feb. 11 and it is really elaborate! I mean, state agency and legislative committee staff put one heckuva lot of work into something that in years past has been a non-starter of a bill.

Has something changed? Is this what Democratic majorities in the House and Senate really have been waiting for? (Next week, we also get word from Congress on how much money Washington will get in bailout money, and how bad the financial situation is. Is it a $7.5 billion shortfall?)

Here is a link to the full text of Senate Bill 5104. But just even more interesting are the numbers in the fiscal note.

One thing that’s worth noting.  On a lot of the bills that have been introduced, the fiscal impact information is not complete–especially the spending bills.  Isn’t it interesting that they have completed the fiscal impact statement on this bill–a REVENUE bill? 

Call your legislator at 1-800-562-6000! 

Tell them NO MORE TAXES!

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Innate hypocrisy, Just plain dishonest, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Stupid legislation, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Washington State legislature and out of control taxation: will the family farms survive?

Posted by Liberty on February 8, 2009

Ag legislator sends out alert about proposed B&O tax

“A bill that would require Washington state farmers to pay the business-and-occupation tax if their gross income is more than $200,000 was sent to the Senate Ways and Means Committee on Friday, Feb. 6.”

You read that right–gross income.  I don’t know how many of my readers know much about agriculture but I know a little.  You would certainly not get the full picture by looking only at a farm’s gross income.  Farmers face a lot of variables–the cost of inputs like seed, fuel and fertilizer; labor costs; the cost to upgrade and replace machinery.  [For those of you not familiar with how expensive that can be, here’s a little comparison.  For the cost of a new John Deere combine, which a good sized wheat farm may use for a month out of the year, you could buy a decent house.  And you could use it all year long.] 

For a lot of farms, gross income probably looks pretty good.  And then the farmer gets to pay the bills.  There’s no guarantee that those bills won’t be as much or more than the gross income.  And that’s without the state of Washington with their hand out for B&O tax. 

“The bill completely or partially repeals seven deductions or exemptions, according to a recent tax alert sent out by Rep. Mark Schoesler, R- Ritzville, ranking Republican on the Senate Agriculture and Rural Development Committee and also a member of the Ways & Means Committee.

”This is such a step backwards from what we’ve been trying to do,’ Schoessler said in an interview Friday, Feb. 6, with the Capital Press. ‘We knew people would be looking for money under every rock but we didn’t expect this shot across the bow so soon.’

Schoessler refers to the tax as the ‘most mean regressive tax’ that can be put on agriculture.

Pointing to the $200,000 threshold, Schoesler said that it wouldn’t even take a circle of potatoes in the Columbia Basin to hit that threshold.

‘And yet there’s no guarantee about profits,’ Schoesler said. Farmers also face high levels of expenses to plant, care for and harvest their crops.

Schoesler, an Eastern Washington farmer and rancher, aid that a gross income of $200,000 is right about where many farming operations become commercial and full-time.

‘This tax could spell trouble for farms that have been struggling and discourage smaller farms from expanding,’ he said.

Schoesler said is that a farmer grossing more than $200,000 could, because of expenses, earn barely enough to avoid qualifying for food stamps, free school lunches, or subsidized children’s health care. Yet that same farmer would have to pay the business-and-occupation tax if the bill becomes law.

The bill number is SB 5911.  The toll free phone number for the Washington State Legislature is 1-800-562-6000.  If you’re so inclined, give your legislator a call and let them know that spending is the problem.  Not revenue.  And give the farmers a break.  Whether or not those liberal Democrats from big city districts in Western Washington understand this or not, agriculture is a vital part of our economy.  Farmers have plenty of economic factors working against them.  Our state government needs to help facilitate the growth of all kinds of businesses, not kill them through punitive taxes.

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Stupid legislation, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

An Obama appointee with integrity–she’s withdrawing!

Posted by Liberty on February 3, 2009

Performance Czar Killefer Withdraws Candidacy

I’m experiencing that feeling of deja vu this morning.  Yet another Obama appointee has tax issues!  Wow!  Let me predict what is going to be said about performance czarina Nancy Killefer’s tax problem.  “It was an honest mistake.”  Or perhaps, “She had a little glitch with her Turbo Tax.” 

“Ms. Killefer, 55 years old, failed to pay employment taxes on household help for a year and a half, the Associated Press reported. In 2005, the AP said, the District of Columbia filed a $946.69 tax lien on her home for failure to pay the unemployment compensation tax. The error was resolved five months later.”

Oh…the old employment taxes on the household help.  Well, we’ve all had that problem, right?  I couldn’t find the box on the 1040 for that one, either.

As it turns out, though, silly excuses probably won’t be necessary.  Nancy Killefer is withdrawing her candidacy, saying that she doesn’t want her tax problems to be a distraction for the new administration.  There goes the only Obama appointee [so far] who possessed an ounce of shame.  Tom?  Tim?  What about you guys?

Oh, and one more thing.  How badly would the MSM be savaging tax-challenged appointees to a Republican administration?

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Innate hypocrisy, Just plain dishonest, Liberalism, Main Stream Media, Obama, Slavish media bias, Taxes | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Don’t like pork? Have you contacted your Senators yet?

Posted by Liberty on February 2, 2009

I just sent a quick e-mail to Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray to ask them not to support the pork-laden stimulus plan.  Your senators need to hear from you, too!  It only takes a minute to tap out a brief, polite message to let them know what you think about their plans for your tax dollars.  [But not Tom Daschle’s or Tim Geithner’s.] 

Contact your senator!

Even if you’re stuck with total liberal Democrats for senators like us in Washington State, it’s still important to speak out.  Don’t think that I don’t know that it’s probably futile to ask Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray for a tax cut but Conservatives have a responsibility to be the voice of the loyal opposition.  Even when we’re down and out, we can not fall silent.

Posted in Conservatism, Constitutional Rights, Freedom of Speech, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Sticking to their guns, Stupid legislation, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Where to go to find Washington State’s biggest spenders

Posted by Liberty on January 15, 2009

Who will be session’s first Big Spender? Place your wagers here

The Evergreen Freedom Foundation is hard at work compiling their list of the biggest spenders for the 2009 legislative session.

“Thanks to Initiative 960’s transparency provisions, the 2008 session was the first time taxpayers had the opportunity to know how much a new law would cost them before it passed. EFF used the cost projections from the Office of Financial Management to add the cost of each bill by sponsor and co-sponsor. We then ranked legislators from the highest to the lowest for their costly new legislation.”

I think it’s important to really publicize what our legislators in Olympia are doing.  They seem to have enjoyed a certain degree of anonymity over the years but thanks to groups like EFF, maybe we can remind them that their actions are subject to public scrutiny. 

Incidentally, here’s the link to last year’s ranking of the biggest spenders:

Hey, Big Spender!
How much will your legislator cost you?

Posted in Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

More on the would-be Treasury Secretary’s tax issues

Posted by Liberty on January 15, 2009

Geithner Accepted IMF Reimbursement for Taxes He Didn’t Pay

Great article by National Review’s Byron York. 

“Documents released by the Senate Finance Committee strongly suggest that Geithner knew, or should have known, what he was doing when he did not pay self-employment taxes in 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004. After his failure to pay was discovered, first by the IRS and later during the vetting process, Geithner paid the federal government a total of $42,702 in taxes and interest.

The IMF did not withhold state and federal income taxes or self-employment taxes — Social Security and Medicare — from its employees’ paychecks. But the IMF took great care to explain to those employees, in detail and frequently, what their tax responsibilities were. First, each employee was given the IMF Employee Tax Manual. Then, employees were given quarterly wage statements for the specific purpose of calculating taxes. Then, they were given year-end wage statements. And then, each IMF employee was required to file what was known as an Annual Tax Allowance Request. Geithner received all those documents.

The tax allowance has turned out to be a key part of the Geithner situation. This is how it worked. IMF employees were expected to pay their taxes out of their own money. But the IMF then gave them an extra allowance, known as a “gross-up,” to cover those tax payments. This was done in the Annual Tax Allowance Request, in which the employee filled out some basic information — marital status, dependent children, etc. — and the IMF then estimated the amount of taxes the employee would owe and gave the employee a corresponding allowance.

At the end of the tax allowance form were the words, “I hereby certify that all the information contained herein is true to the best of my knowledge and belief and that I will pay the taxes for which I have received tax allowance payments from the Fund.” Geithner signed the form. He accepted the allowance payment. He didn’t pay the tax. For several years in a row.”

Honestly…is this the best we can do for Treasury Secretary?  A tax cheat?

Posted in Just plain dishonest, Liberalism, Obama, Taxes | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Tunnel vision

Posted by Liberty on January 14, 2009

Tolls and taxes would help to pay for tunnel

So Queen Christine…oops, I mean Governor Gregoire has finally made a decision about replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct.  This was supposedly an urgent problem a couple of years ago when she and the state legislature raised our gas tax–just in case you’re not paying attention, it’s one of the highest in the entire country.  Even though they now collect $0.375 on every gallon of gas purchased statewide, the Governor and assorted other politicians are wondering how in the world they’re going to pay for the tunnel.  [Incidentally, the tunnel is the most expensive option for replacing the viaduct.] 

The entire state of Washington has been paying ridiculously high gas taxes for quite some time now.  People in Eastern Washington are paying a disproportionate share of these taxes that go for primarily West side projects.  The gas tax package was passed and a subsequent repeal initiative failed because these politicians fomented hysteria over “crumbling” infrastructure like the viaduct, the 520 bridge and rock slide-prone mountain passes.  So where did all this money go?  Down the rat-hole of state government, that’s where.  And guess what?  It wasn’t enough!

“A new package of tolls and taxes would pay for part of the $4.2 billion tunnel destined to replace Seattle’s Alaskan Way Viaduct.”

What can you do but laugh? 

“In addition, King County has asked legislators for authority to levy a 1 percent vehicle license fee to help raise its $190 million share of the project that will come in the form of additional transit service to substitute for reduction in the number of lanes and help commuters during construction. The tunnel would have four lanes; the viaduct now has six.”

Two things.  First, why should vehicles be taxed more to pay for transit?  Maybe the people riding the transit should pay the actual cost of hauling their bus-riding butts around!  Second, the tunnel is the most expensive option to replace the viaduct and it will represent a net loss of capacity–four lanes as opposed to six.  These people are criminally incompetent and yet, they keep getting elected!  And, in the future, when the city is bigger and there is more traffic, how easy is it to expand the tunnel to accommodate more cars?  Hey, maybe it’s a moot point–maybe cars will be illegal by then.  Or perhaps they’ll be just too darn expensive to license and fill with gas.

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Bureaucratic ineptitude, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Social engineering, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

I told you so…

Posted by Liberty on January 14, 2009

http://nwrepublican.blogspot.com/2009/01/washington-state-engine-displacement.html

The engine displacement tax reared its ugly head last session as well.  This plan is yet another way for Washington State government to thwart the will of the voters [$30.00 vehicle licensing, anyone?] and separate you from a little [or a lot] more of your money.  Basically, the larger your vehicle’s engine, the more you’re going to pay.  From the NW Republican blog:

Engine Size (in liters) Fee Schedule
Up to 1.9 $0
2.0 to 2.0 $70
3.0 to 3.9 $225
4.0 to 4.9 $275
5.0 to 5.9 $325
6.0 to 7.9 $400
8.0 or over $600

The sponsors of this bill are all Democrats, no surprise there.  These arrogant, self-righteous liberals want to punish you for driving what you want.  Perhaps in their ideal world, we’d all be driving Toyota Prius’s or Smartcars and thus not paying any additional displacement fee. 

Actually, now that I think about it, since their primary concern is state revenue, our current situation is probably closer to their ideal.  They know that many people choose to drive SUV’s for the safety, comfort and capacity.  They know that thousands of businesses from farms to construction companies to cable installers have fleets of pick-up’s, vans and large trucks.  They know that many people have vehicles for recreation–motor-homes or trucks to pull their boats and trailers.  They know that not everyone can afford to race right out and buy the very latest politically correct little hybrid status symbol.

And they also know that plenty of people in Washington State are struggling right now.  They know that piling on additional taxes in a down economy will be a burden on a lot of families who really just need more of their own money.  They know that Washington State’s high taxes already contribute to our business-unfriendly climate.  And they don’t care! 

Earth to Senators Tom, Kohl-Welles, Pridemore, Keiser & Kline!  Our engines are none of your business!  Your attempt to legislate us into smaller and smaller vehicles is ridiculous and arrogant.  Even more offensive is the very idea that you could propose even more taxes!  Your focus should be on cutting and streamlining state government and reforming and eliminating redistributive entitlement programs, not imposing higher taxes! 

Check out the text of this bill and find out where it’s at right now on Washington Votes.org:

http://washingtonvotes.org/2008-SB-6900

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Social engineering, Socialist economics, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Spending or slashing–which is it?

Posted by Liberty on January 10, 2009

State Budget: Legislature has unique opportunity

In the editorial section on the [doomed] Seattle P-I’s web page today, this headline caught my eye.  We do have a new session of the Washington State legislature beginning January 12.  With a huge budget gap looming, the potential for new taxes is something we need to be on the lookout for.  The economy undoubtedly has some role in the budget crisis but the main problem is spending.  Of the Governor’s budget, House Minority leader Richard DeBolt said that it was a good start but that the problem lies with spending, not revenue. 

Rather than facing the spending problem, however, Democrats are doubling down on the policies that have brought Washington to a $6+ billion deficit.

“At a briefing last week, Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, said legislators need to look for more alternatives to the governor’s budget. House Speaker Frank Chopp, D-Seattle, even added spending ideas, talking about new transportation partnerships and health care. ‘We’re serious about keeping the state’s promise to have health care coverage for every child by 2010,’ he said. On top of that, Democrats will propose an economic stimulus package this week.”

Of course, the P-I editorial board supports quite a bit of the Democrat spending agenda–especially the bit about health care coverage for children.  How could anyone say no to the children, after all?  [How about opening up competition in the health insurance market so more parents could afford to take responsibility for insuring their children themselves?!]  At the end of the article, they do mention the idea of trimming the scope of the state government.  I think this is where the real solution to the budget crisis is at but unfortunately, the P-I treats the issue more as a symbolic measure than a concrete one.

“The state budget picture is going to grow worse (we can only imagine what December’s sales tax figures will look like) and the Legislature is not going to succeed if the discussion centers on cutting budgets. There should be an emphasis on strategy before numbers. Can state agencies and programs be combined? Are there more programs that can be eliminated entirely? (For example, commissions and boards don’t add big numbers to the budget, but they are symbolic about the many branches of government. Trimming them would a clear way to signal a leaner government.)”

I think the P-I may be headed in the right direction here but let’s get past the symbolism and more to the substance, shall we?  By all means, dump the boards and commissions, along with all of the time, manpower and money that they waste.  And continue cutting from there!

Posted in Bureaucratic ineptitude, Liberalism, Main Stream Media, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

One more reason to break up the UAW

Posted by Liberty on December 29, 2008

Autoworkers Union Keeps $6 Million Golf Course for Members at $33 Million Lakeside Retreat

“Even as the industry struggles with massive losses, the UAW brass continue to own and operate a $33 million lakeside retreat in Michigan, complete with a $6.4 million designer golf course. And it’s costing them millions each year.”

 

“But the Black Lake club and retreat, which are among the union’s biggest fixed assets, have lost $23 million in the past five years alone, a heavy albatross around the union’s neck as it tries to manage a multibillion-dollar pension plan crisis.”

And the UAW  is a heavy albatross around the auto companies’ necks.  And the bailout is a heavy albatross around the taxpayers’ necks.

Posted in Liberalism, Union Thuggery | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

How not to fix the economy

Posted by Liberty on December 23, 2008

States set to impose bevy of new taxes

“Governors want to levy higher taxes next year on clothes, soft drinks, gasoline, auto licenses and other items that likely will hit low- and middle-income families struggling to make ends meet in a deepening recession the hardest.

Officials say they are required by law to balance budgets and that tax increases are necessary as state governments face sharply declining tax revenues, but fiscal analysts say raising these taxes during an economic downturn will only worsen local economies and prolong the recession.”

 

“But spending critics said that not enough attention was being paid by the national news media to the plight of taxpayers, whose incomes were being stretched even further by rising sales taxes and fees, and higher property taxes.

‘Most reporters are covering the state budgets and thinking ‘Oh, the poor states,’ and no one is looking at this from the perspective of the taxpayers who are the ones whose wallets are going to be on the line,’ said political strategist Trent Duffy.”

 

Posted in Bureaucratic ineptitude, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Socialist economics, Taxes | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

What the U.S. can learn from Japan’s failed experiment with “zombie businesses”

Posted by Liberty on December 22, 2008

Return of the Living Dead

“After Japan’s asset bubble burst in the late 1980s, their economy took a sharp downturn, prompting government officials to try bailing out banks and investing in infrastructure, much like the activity and proposals floating around America today. The results were terrible.

With the government propping up poor business models rather than allowing further job losses, firms wound up operating over the long-term without making a profit or adding any value to society. Their utter lack of vitality earned these perpetual money-leaching entities the moniker ‘zombie businesses.’ And unless American policymakers understand the failures of the Japanese response, we will suffer the same zombie fate.”

Check out this article in Reason Magazine today that foreshadows the consequences that we’re likely to face in return for passing out government bailouts like Halloween treats.  Ding dong, here’s $700 billion.  Japan has dealt with a similar economic crisis and they made significant errors that prolonged the problem.  We’re headed down that same road and I predict that Japan’s errors will be our errors.

“First mistake. The Bank of Japan tried to ease economic pains during their downturn through the 1990s by loaning large amounts of money to businesses. However, such attempts to recapitalize the market were counteracted by underlying management problems endemic to the dying firms.”

Check.

“Second mistake. With all those loans, the Japanese government was simply too integrated into the market to have adequate incentives to create the right policies. Daniel Okimoto, former director of the Asia-Pacific Research Center, points out that the interests of Japan’s economic bureaucracies, such as the Ministry of Finance, became interdependent with the banking industry.”

Check.

“Third mistake. The length of Japan’s asset deflation, recession, and liquidity struggles has been blamed largely on the lack of foresighted policies and political leadership. Politicians bent on retaining their power took action that sought to solve the present day concerns, such as infrastructure projects, without regard to their long-term effects. As a result, economic growth was not sustained.”

Check.

“Fourth mistake.Japan tried to climb out of its economic mess by raising taxes and cutting interest rates. Okimoto cites a series of policy mistakes in a report on Japan’s economic stagnation that includes a consumption tax hike, business taxes, and heavy-handed reliance on interest rate cuts that reduced investment incentives.”

Are you getting my drift here?

“Fifth mistake. With the Japanese government enabling lending to zombie businesses, taking cash away from productive ventures, and passing tax laws and other regulations that did not promote growth, the private sector was actively discouraged from investing.”

I encourage you to read the whole article–Anthony Randazzo has done his research.  Clearly our politicians have not.

Posted in Conservatism, Obama, Redistribution of wealth, Taxes | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Are you kidding me?

Posted by Liberty on December 19, 2008

With economy in shambles, Congress gets a raise

“A crumbling economy, more than 2 million constituents who have lost their jobs this year, and congressional demands of CEOs to work for free did not convince lawmakers to freeze their own pay.”

So we’re supposed to believe that the congress with record low approval ratings deserves even more of that substance that they love the most–tax dollars?

Update:

Another link:

A raise for Congress, Sarah Palin, and a poem

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Redistribution of wealth | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

Check out Washington Policy Center for the free market take on Washington State issues

Posted by Liberty on December 16, 2008

With the Washington State legislative session coming up in January and budget issues aplenty, it’s more important than ever to pay attention to what’s happening in Olympia.  Washington Policy Center is a think-tank that centers on finding free market solutions to the problems our state is facing.  They have a lot of their research posted on their website

This week, on the WPC blog, Jason Mercier has compiled a list of ideas to help the state fix the budget.  He took the suggestions submitted to Governor Gregoire [remember that?  I blogged it on November 17] and compiled a master list of sorts.  There are some terrific ideas on this list and thanks to Jason for sorting through the raw information to find them.  I hope that Governor Gregoire will study these suggestions in earnest.

Posted in Redistribution of wealth, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Gregoire’s pledge won’t be last word on taxes

Posted by Liberty on December 16, 2008

Gregoire’s pledge won’t be last word on taxes

“True to her campaign promise, Gov. Chris Gregoire plans this week to release a balanced budget that does not rely on new taxes to deal with a $5.8 billion deficit.

But that doesn’t mean taxes won’t be increased. And lawmakers could raise them without breaking Gregoire’s promise, provided voters go along with the idea.”

So on the one hand, we hear continuously about how bad the economy is and how people are signing up for food stamps, clearing out the food banks and getting behind on the mortgage.  But…our esteemed legislators consider raising taxes an option.

Posted in Arrogant politicians, Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Taxes | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

K-12 panel chief urges tax hike

Posted by Liberty on December 12, 2008

Look out!  Dan Grimm says sales tax on services would help fund education changes!

K-12 panel chief urges tax hike

“The chairman of a legislative task force exploring how to improve the way the state pays for K-12 education says a tax increase is the responsible way to pay for the roughly $3 billion worth of ideas in the group’s final report.

Dan Grimm, a former state legislator from Puyallup as well as a two-term state treasurer, said Thursday that he was inspired by a phone call and letter from Gov. Chris Gregoire to propose an extension of the sales tax to services. That would make things such as doctor’s visits and financial advice subject to sales tax.”

If this governor “inspires” anything in me, it’s a desire for a Boston Tea Party-style tax revolt!  When will it be enough?

Luckily, there is a website for the Basic Education Finance Task Force.  I’ll be contacting them to voice my opposition to more taxes for public education.  Dan Grimm, the task force chair, can be reached at dan.grimm@prodigy.net.  The full contact list is here.  Public schools in Washington State already get lottery money, timber money, money from the general fund, federal funding, as well as local bonds and levies.  The problem is how schools choose to spend the money, not that Washington taxpayers don’t pay enough.  In light of the weak economy, it would be highly irresponsible for the legislature and Queen Christine to force any more taxes upon the already over-taxed State of Washington!

Posted in Public education, Redistribution of wealth, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The new perspective on employment in Washington–wages determined by how much the employee “needs” instead of the value of their work to their employer

Posted by Liberty on December 9, 2008

New jobs in Washington paying less than living wage

“Nearly 80 percent of job openings in Washington last year paid less than a living wage for a single parent with two children.”

These were the findings of Gerald Smith, associate director of the Northwest Federation of Community Organizations.

“Among other strategies, the study advocated for taxpayer support for economic development; more investments in training, education and apprenticeships; increased wage progression; and use of living wage figures to set wage policies and determine eligibility for public assistance.”

The very concept of a “living wage” is a nebulous thing.  It depends a lot upon the relationship between needs and wants that we all struggle with.  I think we also need to be very careful about what these groups might really stand for and what their genuine agenda may be before giving their findings any credibility.  They certainly seem to support redistributive policies and government dependence, which will only lower the standard of living for more people.

Coincidentally, Queen Christine met with business leaders to troll for ideas on fixing Washington State’s economy.

State recovery has ‘no time to waste’

Governor Gregoire, I’ll give you one hint: redistributing wealth, increased wage progression and the use of living wage figures to set wage policies is how NOT to help Washington’s economy.  Cutting taxes and getting the state government out of the lives of business owners and citizens alike is what we all desperately need.

Posted in Liberalism, Redistribution of wealth, Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Finally some common sense in the bailout madness–keeping your own money!

Posted by Liberty on December 2, 2008

Pay No Tax For Two Months?

“Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), a member of the conservative House Republican Study Committee, proposes to use the $350 billion left of the $700 billion bank bailout to fund a two-month tax holiday that would put money in the pockets of American taxpayers.”

Unfortunately with a Democrat president-elect and the Democrat controlled Senate and House, Gohmert’s plan may be a long shot.  Obama only favors “tax cuts” when they’re for people who don’t pay any federal income tax.

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Follow up on Skagit property taxes

Posted by Liberty on December 2, 2008

Property assessments shocking to some

“Dennis Thomas has lived on his five-acre property near Concrete for 35 years. He figures his assessment has gone up more than 50 percent in two years. Officials from the Assessor’s Office have claimed that rural five-acre lots like Thomas’ remain in high demand, which would partially explain the increase.

‘I think that would be debatable if you talk to any of the Realtors up here,’ Thomas said. Anything in the $200,000 to $400,000 price range “is absolutely not moving,” he said.”

Apparently I wasn’t the only one surprised by Skagit County’s valuation of my property.  This article goes on to say that they have already received hundreds of appeals.  The last day to appeal your assessment is December 5.  The Skagit County Assessor’s website has tax information and a link to the appeal form.

Posted in Skagit County, Taxes | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

When is it going to be enough?

Posted by Liberty on November 26, 2008

WA cities can add $20 car tab fee

“Olympia might be the first city in Washington to use a state law that allows a $20 fee on vehicle registrations without a public vote.”

Property taxes, sales taxes, sin taxes, fuel taxes, fees, fines, licenses…when are the people of Washington State going to finally say, “NO MORE!”  If memory serves, Washington voters passed an initiative limiting vehicle tabs to $30.00.  The arrogance of government bureaucrats is simply appalling.

Posted in Taxes, Washington State | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »