Tax Is, What If, Money
by Vice President Knight Allen
Originally published on June 11, 2015 - reprinted with permission
"We hold these truths to be self evident . . . .
"This represents the pinnacle of the Classical Liberal principles of POLITICAL
"Do not tax the necessities of life." Wealth of Nations
This represents the pinnacle of the Classical Liberal principles of ECONOMIC governance.
So, what happened in the 2015 legislative session which was so dominated by taxation? Nothing good and a
lot bad. Not one single legislator spoke against the billion dollar plus business revenue tax plan basing
their opposition on the Principle: "Do not tax the necessities of life. "Even the handful of "No taxes"
conservatives could not articulate the cruelty, viciousness and horrible economic injustice of Gov.
Sandoval's proposed (now law) plan.
As brilliant, moral, decent and pragmatic as the Principle is it made no difference at all when you've
got a legislature and governor who are either ignorant of it, afraid of it or know it but just don't care.
They wanted the money and they got the money. What could be more important? Besides, it's for the "greater
good" isn't it? It's for the children’s education, right?
Basically nice human beings. Worthless as political
leaders of a free people.
There is a new game being played by the national media. It falls into the category of "Gotcha" journalism.
It was first played successfully on Jeb Bush then moved on to the other Republican candidates for President.
It goes like this: "Knowing what you know now would you have invaded Iraq?"
For Jeb Bush and the Republican candidates it's a lose-lose question which a cynic might say is its raison
d'etre. As silly as the game is it occurred to me it might be fun to expand and play with it. Ready?
Knowing what you know now would you have . . . . . .
- gone into Cambodia as Nixon did?
- escalated the Vietnam War as LBJ did?
- increased our commitment to Vietnam as JFK did?
- put the first advisors into Vietnam as Eisenhower did?
would you have . . . . .
- dropped the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki as Truman did?
- issued Executive Order 9066 to round up all the Japanese Americans on the west coast and place them in
internment camps as FDR did?
- Led America into WWI "to make the world safe for democracy" as Wilson did?
would you have . . . . .
- suspended habeas corpus, physically destroyed every newspaper opposing your policies and jailed their
owners as Lincoln did?
- signed the Constitution of the United States with slavery imbedded in it?
Leadership is not just about the leaders. It's about them, the people and the political, social and
economic era in which they all come together. Playing the "Knowing what you know now . . . . " game can be
fun for us but is pretty pathetic when used as a near litmus test for people seeking the Presidency
of the US or any elected office for that matter.
There was an interesting article in the RJ on June 3rd. The headline read, "Public more wary of billionaires'
electoral sway." Straight out of 'Casablanca' the author rounded up the usual suspects naming billionaires on
both sides who are spending huge amounts of money to "buy" elections. Fries, Mercer
Adelson and, of course, the
Koch brothers on the Republican side. Alice Walton, Mark Benioff, Steyer and Soroson the Democratic side. Clash
of the Titans? Well, maybe, but what are the results of all this spending, besides the benefits of all that cash
going out of their pockets and into society in general? An outfit called the Sunlight Foundation tracked the big
money in the 2012 & 2014 elections. Turns out that on either side the results were not that great. For example,
Steyer spent $79 million in 2014 with $17.9 million directed to specific congressional races. His failure rate
was 68%. That's nothing compared to Adelson who spent $100 million in 2012 with a failure rate of 100%.
Bottom line? We will vote the way we want to vote and all the noise coming from the 1%, on either side, isn't
going to make a heck of a lot of difference to us. It might be helpful to keep that in mind when the speech control
freaks come around whining about 'Citizen's United'.
Vice-President Knight Allen
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