When in the course of human events our government starts talking about revamping the tax code and social security we the voting public would do well to keep our guard up.
If, for example, Social Security will face problems funding benefits down the road and if private investment accounts are part of an answer, as the administration insists, perhaps the government should stop spending the current surplus on other things and make better investments of its own right now. The fund is after all “the people’s money” not a pork machine. And if the country is to believe that tax cuts for the wealthy are good for the economy and will benefit even the least of us in time, why is there talk of cutting benefits to Medicare and Medicaid to help balance the budget and cut the deficit?
And isn’t it well past time to put the so-called “missile defense system” way on the back burner somewhere? Its repeated failures and questions about its ultimate viability call into question its efficacy as a reliable method of protecting the country. And its enormous price tag is a drag not only on other military systems but domestic programs as well.
Then too, in the course of discussions about tax matters we are told that the estate tax is unfair to small farms and businesses whose families may lose everything upon the death of a principle, but such is rarely the case and there are certainly ways of avoiding such calamities.
For example, Congress could exempt small owners and raise the amount of protected inheritance. But to suggest that passing along hundreds of millions of dollars, untaxed, should somehow become a permanent part of our tax code defies logic and fair practice. As Bill Gates Senior has suggested, the very rich in this country have benefited immeasurably just by living in the U.S.; an individual’s success is not just the result of one’s singular effort, and the estate tax is a way of paying the country back for all that has been provided.

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