Their lies. Oh, and add to the list of those I hold in contempt, the lazy, stupid (self-lobotomized), selfish, demi-wannabe-sociopaths that make up the thundering herd of sheeple who lap up politicians’ *spit* and Mass Media Podpeople’s poison and beg for more.
Most recent example: the onslaught of lies, damned lies and typical “news reportage” damning the Fair Tax. A typical example is Bruce Bartlett’s “Fair Tax, Flawed Tax” in the August 26 edition of the Wall Street Journal’s Opinion Online. Since Bruce Bartlett is widely known as an intelligent man, one who claims to do his homework and know whereof he speaks, and therefore can be assumed to have done as he purports and have actually read the Fair Tax proposal, then one may fairly characterize each and every comment he makes in criticism of the Fair Tax to be a witting, deliberate lie.
Neal Boortz does a fair shirtsleeve summation of Bartlett’s lies (charitably assuming that Bartlett simply relied on the lies or misunderstandings of others), but let me just give a (redundancy alert! :-)) brief prÃƒÂ©cis of the most egregious lies:
“In reality, the FairTax rate is not 23%. Messrs. Linder and Chambliss get this figure by calculating the tax as if it were already incorporated into the price of goods and services. (This is known as the tax-inclusive rate.)”
While Bartlett does say something that is true here, he places it in the context of stating that Fair Tax proponents are lying about the 23% rate. That in itself is a pernicious lie. What Bartlett does is ignore the simple fact that all the taxes (plural!) that the Fair Tax would replace–income taxes, Social Security taxes, Medicare taxes, etc.–are also tax inclusive! Bartlett goes on to (FALSELY!) claim that “every other” tax is calculated at the “tax-EXclusive rate” when such a claim is patently false.
Bartlett further exacerbates his lying with something that a soi-disant “economic pundit” has no excuse for uttering–either complete and absolute stupidity, worthy of a brain damaged seventh grader, perhaps, or an outright, deliberate lie. Let Bartlett chose which it is.
“If a product costs $1 at retail, the FairTax adds 30%, for a total of $1.30. Since the 30-cent tax is 23% of $1.30, FairTax supporters say the rate is 23% rather than 30%.”
I’m going to Neal Boortz for the rebuttal on this one (even though Boortz all too charitably starts off simply saying Bartlett is wrong *heh*):
Wrong, wrong, wrong. If a product costs $1 at retail …. It costs $1, with the FairTax already included. This is so easy to understand, you almost get the idea that people are intentionally trying to confuse the facts here. That $1 item Bartlett is referring to costs $1 at retail today! But instead of including the FairTax in that price, all of the embedded taxes from every business and individual involved in bringing that item to the marketplace are included. You remove one, you add the other. And that bit about 30 percent to the federal government on top of the purchase price of your new home? Another lie. The embedded taxes are so high on the price of a new home today that when they are removed and the FairTax added, that home could be a percent or two cheaper! Come on, Bruce. This really isn’t that hard. Let’s try to spell this out plainly for everyone:The 23 percent FairTax is not added to the price of everything you buy … it is already included in the price of everything you will buy, just as the embedded taxes are included today. You remove one, you add the other.
Let that sink in again: the Fair Tax replaces all the taxes that are already–NOW–added into the price of everything you buy, from new houses to laundry detergent, from new cars (the Fair Tax would not apply to used goods) to tires for your old car (unless you bought used tires–*heh*). It replaces all the now hidden taxes on everyone and every business from raw materials through manufacturing, distribution and finally retail. No more paying for a business’ taxes and all the taxes on all the businesses that have led to the retail counter. Replace, not add to.
More Bartlett below the belt lies:
Since sales taxes are regressive–taking more in percentage terms from the incomes of the poor and middle class than the rich–some provision is needed to prevent a vast increase in taxation on the nonwealthy. The FairTax does this by sending monthly checks to every household based on income.
Aside from the incredible complexity and intrusiveness of tracking every American’s monthly income–and creating a de facto national welfare program–the FairTax does not include the cost of this rebate in the tax rate.
Lie #1 above: “The FairTax does this by sending monthly checks to every household based on income.”
Bullshit lie. In no way, shape, fashion or form does the Fair Tax proposal at any time or in any way specify “sending monthly checks to every household based on income” and so it would not in any way require the lie in the following sentence (Lie #2 above), either. What the Fair Tax does do is send a “prebate” to every household based on family size, period. All a family needs is valid Social Security numbers for family members. (Nice. No prebates to illegals!)
Lie #3 above: “…the FairTax does not include the cost of this rebate in the tax rate.”
According to Congressman Linder, the primary author of the Fair Tax bill, if the cost of the prebate had NOT been included, then the Fair Tax rate would have been 5% less, 18%. Bartlett either knows this and is lying or is stupid. No other options, save that he is lying and is stupid enough to think no one will call him on it (but crafty enough to know that the sheeple will lap up his poison and ask for more).
Bartlett lies about other things (of course), including the old chestnut that the 1990s “Church” of Scientology *spit* proposal for a national sales tax IS the Fair Tax proposal. (By this point in Bartlett’s article I was almost convinced that he’s become a full-blown Mass Media Podperson whose mind is fully under the control of the Hive Mind dictates from a Mother Ship orbiting Uranus–almost convinced.) Utter bullshit, as any responsible person would have determined before uttering it. (at the link, you can check out the origins of the Fair Tax proposal and determine for yourself that none of those involved have any connection to the Cult of Scientology and that the Scientology Cult tax proposal was substantially different to the Fair Tax.)
Go read the Bartlett article. The do your own homework and see. It’s true: the Fair Tax opponents have nothing but lies on their side.
(h.t. to HtH via email for the original link to Boortz and to Bartlett’s article)
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