LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Make government earn our taxes

After hearing President Obama’s speech the other day regarding the “fiscal cliff,” I think it is probably apparent to most people that nothing has changed: The president still wants to tax “the rich,” give tax cuts to the middle class and reduce the national debt.

I believe he is serious about the first two points, but I just don’t buy his claims that he wants to reduce the national debt. People must understand what the president is saying when he refers to raising “revenue.” In this case, revenue means higher taxes. Mr. Obama argues that the top wage earners should pay the bill — he considers this the “fair share” approach. In fact, most wage earners will have to pay higher taxes in order to fund his plans to expand the massive entitlements that are coming. I hope the public begins to understand that the revenue the president refers to is part of our wages being withheld from us.

Over a very long period, Americans have accepted as fact that these funds belong to the government and not to the people earning them. I reject this notion. If people would begin to understand that the money is ours first and foremost and not the government’s, we may be able to shift the paradigm from what the president calls “revenue” to what it really is — a forced takeover of a portion of America’s wealth. Frederic Bastiat, the 19th-century French economist, explained “legal plunder” by saying, “When a portion of wealth is transferred from the person who owns it — without his consent and without compensation, and whether by force or by fraud — to anyone who does not own it, then I say that property is violated.”

America needs to stand up and stop these acts of plunder that have been going on for the past 100 years. Let’s make the government generate revenue the way most everyone else in the country does: by doing something constructive to earn it.

ROB WEINHOLD

Dale City, Va.

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