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Wanting to pay less to government is no fairy tale

Letter to the Editor


While Mr. Hunter’s editorial (“Seeking the fairy tale land of no taxes,” 11/18) makes some good points about how taxes are used to pay for the upkeep of our roads, I take issue with some of the other statements. I do believe that most people realize that some taxes are necessary to maintain roads, provide police/fire protection, keep the parks nice, etc. But how much is enough? He says that “we all want services, and we all want to not pay for them.” That statement does not tell the whole story. We pay income tax, property tax, vehicle license fees, sales tax, social security tax, Medicare tax, estate tax, gasoline tax, and if you have any investments, add capital gains and dividend taxes. I am sure there are more that I can’t think of at the time of writing this. Didn’t our state legislature just raise our gasoline tax this summer, making it one of the highest in the country?

It’s not that we don’t want to pay for the services we desire. It’s that we don’t trust the government with anymore of our money. As far as the initiative that requires a 2/3 majority to raise taxes, we should celebrate the fact that a majority of voters have made it harder for the government to collect the money we earn. After all, it is our money, not theirs. Rather than looking at this as something that gives more power to the no voters than the yes voters, look at it as giving the people more power to hold the government accountable for its spending. Heck, the Constitution didn’t address a federal income tax until the ratification of the 16th Amendment in 1913.

Mr. Hunter seems to think that those of us who want lower taxes live in a fairy tale world where everything is paid for with magic beans. I take exception to that, and believe the opposite is true. The true fairy tale world is one where people continue to vote for more and more taxes, and expect those who pay the majority of those taxes to pay even more and not exercise more scrutiny on what is collected and where it is spent. I don’t think wanting a smaller government and keeping more of our own money is a fairy tale world. Remember that our great country used to fight against excessive taxation. Dennis Miller said it best: “ For God’s sake, they were blowing peoples’ heads off because they put a tax on their breakfast beverage. And it wasn’t even coffee.”

Chip Cathcart

Coulee Dam

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