Many Americans fought for their independence from England because they were taxed, but at the same time they had no representation in the English parliament. The Declaration of Independence clearly points out this grievance as to why we sought our independence: “For imposing taxes without our consent”. How things have changed over the last 230 years. Today, many people in our society receive representation in our government, but fail to pay a single penny in income taxes.
Today, 60% of Americans pay income taxes and therefore, support the government programs that the other 40% of Americans enjoy. Many of these programs are entitlements that include food stamps, unemployment, housing subsidies, welfare, Medicaid and or ObamaCare. These welfare entitlements are bankrupting our nation and they are the fastest growing segment in our national budget along with social security and Medicare. As more and more Americans become eligible for social handouts it forces the government to raise taxes on the wealthy to pay for these benefits. However, at some point, increased taxes on the wealthy yields lower federal revenue because higher taxes reduce the incentive for responsible workers to earn more money. This phenomenon is often referred to as the Laffer Effect. Thus, raising taxes alone will not solve the problem of billions of dollars in unfunded liabilities to pay for these massive social entitlement programs. The only solution is to cut these benefits.
Cutting social benefits is easier said than done. First, any attempt to cut benefits will resort in massive protests and civil unrest. We have seen examples of this in Greece. As soon as the government proposed cuts to social programs the masses began violent protests. Secondly, the poor in our country are united along the progressive ideology. Thus, they make up a huge portion of the electorate and they support Democratic candidates that will continue to provide them welfare benefits. The progressive welfare coalition is joined by middle class minorities, liberal academic elites, and blue collar union workers to make up well over 50% of the electorate. Thus, it is hard to get candidates into office that will reform social entitlements. Thirdly, many of the people collecting these welfare benefits have been trained, like Pavlov’s Dog, and do not know any better. They have been taught through the generations that the government will support them. This is why there is no incentive for kids to be responsible and do well in school. This is going to be a tough barrier to bridge. In fact, most people receiving entitlement benefits have absolutely no earthly idea where the money is coming from.
Sure, many Americans receive government assistance to help them through a tough time, but many others abuse these privileges and accept handouts their entire lives. Is this fair? Is this a right outlined in our Constitution that a vast portion of our population should rely on others hard work to survive? At the same time, is it fair that an individual who contributes nothing positive towards society has the right to vote? In fact, the tax burden on the wealthy will always have a massive negative impact on the economy because it prevents the growth needed to create new jobs and the limits the funding needed to create innovative new products to stem future growth.
Yes, I have empathy for the poor and would like to help them. However, being poor is similar to being addicted to drugs and alcohol, but instead being addicted to a substance individuals are addicted to the government. The only way for people to break their addictions they must first realize they have a problem and then they must help themselves. Any help from others only “enables the behavior” to remain addicted and does nothing to remedy the situation. Anyone who has lived with a family member that is dependent on drugs or alcohol understands this concept all too well.
Thus, it is time to break this entitlement addiction by reducing benefits. Nobody should ever be offered entitlement benefits over their entire life. Set incentives that a person must have a high school diploma to earn a drivers license or the right to vote. Everyone must be forced to make a positive impact towards society. We must have fewer people who are dependent on our government and do not pay their fair share of dues to society.
My Book: Is America Dying? (Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble)