LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Buffett rule won’t help lower deficit

Question of the Day

Is it still considered bad form to talk politics during a social gathering?

View results

Much has been written about the recent tax debate regarding the “Buffett rule” and the soon-to-expire George W. Bush-era tax cuts (“Obama’s man crush on Reagan,” Comment & Analysis, Thursday). What concerns me most in it all are the “fair share” quotes coming from President Obama.

One can debate the definition of “fair” ad infinitum, and therein lies the problem. If one person makes five times more than another person and pays five times more than that person in taxes, that may seem fair to many people. If taxes are used as a punishment for the highest earners, that may seem fair to everyone except those highest earners. In fact, one would suppose (or fear) that what seems fair is a tax policy that redistributes wealth and benefits via higher tax rates for anyone in a tax bracket higher than one’s own.

If I were told that, based on an objective formula, my tax rate needed to increase in order to balance the budget, I might be able to get comfortable with that equation, assuming I think the government’s spending is necessary and appropriate. But the subjective use of the term “fair share” is overtly a class-warfare technique. It is divisive politics at its worst and is being employed deliberately in today’s populist rhetoric.

The mathematical truth behind the additional revenues from the Buffett rule and the expiration of the Bush tax cuts illustrates this strategy. These measures do nothing to address the deficit, but they do much to stoke malignant populism ahead of an election. If voters cannot see through this ploy, we will get what we deserve. Ultimately, the government may gain enough ground to scare everyone. Let’s make sure we see it coming.


Charlotte, N.C.

© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

blog comments powered by Disqus
TWT Video Picks
You Might Also Like
  • Maureen McDonnell looks on as her husband, former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, made a statement on Tuesday after the couple was indicted on corruption charges. (associated press)

    PRUDEN: Where have the big-time grifters gone?

  • This photo taken Jan. 9, 2014,  shows New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gesturing as he answers a question during a news conference  at the Statehouse in Trenton.  Christie will propose extending the public school calendar and lengthening the school day in a speech he hopes will help him rebound from an apparent political payback scheme orchestrated by key aides. The early front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination will make a case Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014, that children who spend more time in school graduate better prepared academically, according to excerpts of his State of the State address obtained by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    BRUCE: Bombastic arrogance or humble determination? Chris Christie’s choice

  • ** FILE ** Secretary of State Hillary Rodham testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the deadly September attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador J. Chris Stevens and three other Americans. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

    PRUDEN: The question to haunt the West

  • Get Breaking Alerts