Protect and Defend

Welcome to my blog, Protect and Defend. You don’t have to understand me. You only have to agree with me. I can live with losing the good fight, but I can not live with not fighting that good fight at all. - Publius

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Death Tax

I am 100% against the Death Tax. When my grandmother dies and leaves what ever she has saved over the years to her 3 children, 2 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren, the government should not be allowed to take a single penny of it. Most likely this will mean maybe $2000 or less per person. But, she has saved for years to put that money aside to leave it to her family and in doing so has purposely not spent the money on leisure activities that she could be enjoying right now.
But,
I am 100% FOR the Estate Tax. Billionaires who have made their money off the backs of the working people, and have paid high prices accountants to find every loophole in the tax laws possible to prevent these fat cats from keeping money from the government should not be allowed to pass along all this accumulated wealth without having to give back to the government and the poor.
But it looks like no one is listening.

From Time:
The House in June passed a steep reduction of the estate tax (so as to apply only to couples leaving more than $10 million to their heirs) that would cost the Treasury three quarters of a trillion dollars over the next decade…Senate Republicans tried to push it through by linking the bill to an increase in the minimum wage, which has not been raised in nine years (Time, September 4, 2006).

Now of course the estate tax and the death tax are the same thing. But how can Republicans consciously try to pass a bill that would reduce the estate tax only on those who leave more than 10 million dollars to their heirs? If anything these are the people who should pay more. Anyone who leaves more than a million should be taxed with an Estate Tax, while those who leave less than 1 million would be covered under a Death Tax and be able to leave any money tax free. Now, I am sure there are still ways to get around such an Estate Tax by say giving your money to your family members before you die, but if my Shawshank Redemption is right, you can only make a 1 time gift of up to $50,000 to your spouse tax free. So even here, unless the laws have been changed, the government would get the money owed to them. But, I doubt this will be proposed either.

I hate to say it, but thank goodness the Democrats stopped this from happening. I have always said I am a conservative not a Republican, which often leaves me not wanting for either party, and this is just another example. We have Pro-Choice and pro-gay marriage Republicans, but you show me an old-school, God-fearing, Southern Democrat who will stand up against terrorists, and I will show you someone I would vote for every time.

10 Comments:

Blogger Brooke said...

I am against ALL Death Tax no matter how rich or poor the person might be. After all, if it weren't for a greedy and intrusive government, the rich (and I'm certainly not one of 'em) wouldn't have to pay accountants to figure out how to get around these laws!

The minimum wage hike is another thing I am against. If I make oh, say, $10 per hour, and the gubmit raises minimum wage by two or three dollars, I'm suddenly making a lot less by comparison! That's not right, either!

Thu Sep 07, 01:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Valerie said...

"The minimum wage hike is another thing I am against. If I make oh, say, $10 per hour, and the gubmit raises minimum wage by two or three dollars, I'm suddenly making a lot less by comparison! That's not right, either!"

The minimum wage needs to be raised to keep up with inflation. Every year that the minimum wage stays at $5.15 (or whatever it is) per hour, people that are making minimum wage earn less money (in terms of spending ability). That means that someone earning minimum wage 10 years ago (the dollar amount of the minimum wage has not increased in the past decade) was able to support themselves better than someone earning minimum wage today. So every year, the "minimum wage" actually decreases in terms of spending ability, which is also not fair!

Fri Sep 08, 08:55:00 AM  
Blogger The Local Crank said...

The estate tax was vigorously promoted by, among others, Thomas Jefferson (who was opposed to creating a landed aristocracy in America) and Theodore Roosevelt, who believed inheirited wealth would create a "weak and effiminate" class of rich fops.

Fri Sep 08, 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger Bobkatt said...

Brooke, I feel your pain but it seems more productive to look at the beating you are taking compared to the upper level income earners than to worry about what minimum wagers get.
The United States long has had the industrialized world's largest gap in pay between chief executives and blue-collar workers. CEO compensation swelled from 85 times what workers earned in 1990, to 209 times in 1996, and 326 times the following year. In 1999, CEO pay surged to a record 419 times the average worker's wage, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Fri Sep 08, 03:46:00 PM  
Blogger Brooke said...

That's true, but I think that if you start out at minimum wage and stick with a job, you should be getting a raise sometime. If not, adios!

Raising minimum wage means that jobs that make more must raise their base pay to remain even remotely competitive, and the large MW hike of nearly three dollars per hour isn't likely to be matched by employers. Even if it is, the employee in that job already isn't likely to get an equal hike, thus meaning he got more or less a pay cut: He is now making base pay even though he's been there longer than new hires.

The government coming in and telling companies how much they should pay people isn't the answer, nor is getting pissed at upper level earners. Heaven knows they pay enough taxes! Besides, if a company is stupid enough to give SO MUCH profit in 'bonuses' to CEOs, then they deserve the failure they are destined to endure. Take the airline industry. Huge bonuses to CEOs while they worry that giving a passenger a bag of peanuts is going to break the bank. If it weren't for the Fed coming in and bailing these morons out, they would've failed, and been replaced by someone who knows how to do business!

I know, that was a bit of a rant, but I really, really feel that the Fed hiking MW doesn't help the poor, it eleminates the middle class, creating a larger class of poor, and seperating the upper income earners. We are turning ourselves into a class-based socialist society, and no one wants to admit it.

Fri Sep 08, 06:06:00 PM  
Blogger Publius said...

Brooke, I am assuming you don’t really believe that “upper level earners” pay enough taxes. I think it might depend on what you call an upper level earner though. Living in the DC area with the cost of living and surrounded by mostly government workers or retired government workers, here the highest wage you can make without a special appointment is about $135,000. Now, this may seem like a lot depending on where you live, but here in the DC area where new homes start at about $450,000, this wage gets by, but only those who are near retirement make this money. The starting GS-5 salary is about $25,000-$32,000. And to get a job on the Hill as a new hire for a Staff Assistant position is about $27,000. Only problem is that to rent an apartment near DC will cost between $800 and $2000 for an efficiency or one bedroom. But I have rambled a bit here. People who make $130,000 are not upper level earners, they are middle class here in DC. But there are also plenty of people who make multi-millions and these people do not pay enough in taxes, nor do athletes, musicians, actors, etc. Turn on V-H1 someday and watch a show about “celebrity cribs” and tell me if these people are paying enough in taxes?
As for a hike in minimum wage, well most states have their own minimum wage and this is often higher than the $5.15 set by the federal government. I have never worked for minimum wage myself, but I have worked for $6.00 an hour and I struggled to get by with no wife or kids. I had no TV, Internet, or phone, and I packed a lunch everyday until I started to work a second job, and only then could I afford basic cable and a landline so I could get dial-up internet. Sure, this is better off than say 75% of the world, but in the richest country in the world we should not have people going without because those in power who can decide when to give themselves a raise will not raise the minimum wage for the poorest workers and thus improve their quality of life.
Crank, I am with you on the estate tax, we don’t need an aristocracy here in the US although we are getting one if we don’t have one now.
And Valerie, I am right there with you. I am not a “compassionate conservative” on fiscal matters, but I have known people on Welfare who were good people in a bad place, and I have worked two jobs before to make it by, and I do come from a family of coal miners and factory workers. So even if I did not grow up poor, I can understand and appreciate what I have.

Fri Sep 08, 10:23:00 PM  
Blogger quakerdave said...

I have already told my sons that I am giving them their inheritence now, by putting them through college, should they choose to go. That is the best legacy I can leave them.

They also know that when I retire, I will be travelling the world on my savings.

Whatever else is left is gravy.

Tue Sep 12, 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger Publius said...

QD and if that is your plan then good for you. But, that does not mean that my grandmother should not be able to carry out her plans or accomplish her goals of leaving something for her kids and grandkids just for the government to take it away.

Wed Sep 13, 01:41:00 AM  
Blogger Brooke said...

I think the government is far too intrusive on all fiscal matters. In this, I prefer a flat tax, and lassie-faire after that.

I don't think that upper-level earners should be punished because they make a lot of money... The flat tax would eliminate all questions of loopholes, and do they give enough for what they make, ect.

As for the cost of living in your area: That isn't rich folk's fault, it is AGAIN the government. High taxes (And D.C. is pretty darn high, from what I understand) tend to drive up the cost of everything.Property tax probably has a lot to do with the cost of rent, ect.

Oh, well.

QD, that is an excellent plan! Your sons should be grateful!

Sat Sep 16, 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger Publius said...

Brooke, property taxes have little effect on rent prices. Wages and availability do. Rent is determined by how much you think you can get for a property not by the property tax. People rent a property for more than their monthly mortgage so they can make a profit on the property.

Sat Sep 16, 09:56:00 PM  

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