Bernie Sanders and taxing our way to social medicine...

Today I was surfing the news feeds as I usually do, when I came across this article from Motley Fool… I’ve read several articles about Bernie Sanders and how he thinks we can move to universal single payer health care and finance it through tax hikes, but this is the first article I have seen that breaks it down into individual tax brackets. There is also a bit of analysis on long term economic effects. Let’s put all that to the side for a minute though, and examine one question: Is it right, or even fair to tax people at ever increasing rates as they work hard and earn more money? One of the principles of the American system is capitalism. Capitalism encourages people to work harder and make more money. After all, that’s how you move up. That’s how you realize the American Dream. Or so we have all been told. The biggest failure in the Sanders tax plan is this: It de-incentivizes work. There is really no reason to work harder if the government is going to take bigger and bigger chunks of your income away if you are successful. This is true of the current system also, but Sanders’ plan further punishes those who are successful. It is hard to see people not doing their own very personal cost-benefit analysis and deciding that at some certain point it simply isn’t worth trying to earn more if the government is going to take it away. What the Sanders plan does is move the break-even point down the income spectrum. Those already rich will offshore their wealth, or hide it in some of the many tax shelters their high priced lawyers and accountants will devise. The guy in the middle will again get screwed. I have to give Bernie some credit though. He’s planning on screwing over the guy at the bottom too, by apparently a modest 2.2%. Yet another great step towards the socialist feudal paradise. You can read the article at the link below. Let me hear your thoughts on this. http://www.fool.com/retirement/general/2016/02/07/bernie-sanders-income-tax-brackets-how-much-would.aspx


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  • Ethan Ferbel
    followed this page 2018-01-08 18:44:30 -0500
  • jules rensch
    commented 2016-04-07 00:40:35 -0400
    One of my favs among the founding fathers is Thomas Paine….
    Today, the catch phrase in many political discussions is
    “entitlements” yay or nay ?
    Gleaning Paines works does surely reveal that this man combined his great wisdom with good measures of compassion for his fellowman.
    He suggested a plan to care for the infimed, the elderly, the helpless, orphans and the disadvantaged.
    Little by little, some of what he advocated has come to fruition…even with the enormous amount of resistance that still continues to this day.
    MWP = America First, Americans Foremost

    respectfully, Observer Jules
  • jules rensch
    commented 2016-04-03 09:58:00 -0400
    Having lived in 3 quite differing countries … my delight was to find how well Canada does with it’s Social Medical Scheme….the tax burden required to do this is a shared reponsibilty, among all. Perhaps something that Americans cannot or will not embrace.
    So it seems that Canadians and most developed countries have managed to put their citizens first…not a bad idea.
    Interestingly, the Canadian system was completely implemented (coast to coast) over 45 years ago, meanwhile the USA continues to struggle and argue the point. As a Whig Party concern, I would suggest “Americans First” as our creed.

    Observer Jules
  • jules rensch
    tagged this with good 2016-04-03 09:57:59 -0400
  • Brandon Zicha
    commented 2016-02-26 05:50:36 -0500
    I think it is good to turn to the evidence rather than the ideological debates regarding incentives and work, or the ‘road to serfdom’ that Hayek coined and the post here rebrands as ‘a great step towards the socialist feudal paradise.’. Not only in America have we seen higher tax rates, but across western Europe we see these too, which some of those countries seeing higher worker productivity than the United States. This presents at best, mixed evidence that eliminates any certainty to the claim ‘X disincentivizes work’.

    As to Universal Medical Coverage and the road to serfdom, I would point out that, again, the rest of the ‘free world’ has universal healthcare and has not only not been sliding towards authoritarian egalitarian serfdom, but if anything a liberalizing of economic activity while bolstering and tinkering with the Universal health care scheme. The Netherlands and Belgium for instance have hybrid schemes, with universal health care but competition in the insurance sector. They both also experience far lower health care costs, with the Netherlands seeing the best health outcomes in Europe.

    Finally, I think we Whigs more than most, should take seriously the evidence and analysis that suggests that big changes are coming and not get locked into ideological talking points of traditional political movements. Most manufacturing and unskilled tasks will be automated within 30 years. We have no way of knowing if there will even be enough work to do to make that system of “the Capitalist American Dream” socially sustainable! One of the dreams of progress is that we will have more leisure, but this goes directly against the notion that “One of the principles of the American system is capitalism. Capitalism encourages people to work harder and make more money. After all, that’s how you move up. That’s how you realize the American Dream.” Universal basic income, Universal medical care, etc. may end up being the only way to maintain the material living standards and healthy community life.
  • Brandon Zicha
    tagged this with bad 2016-02-26 05:50:36 -0500
  • Zach Baker
    commented 2016-02-23 15:57:30 -0500
    I don’t believe higher taxes de-incentivizes work. There have been higher taxes in the past, and it didn’t make people less inclined to work. See the 1950’s and the Eisenhower administration: http://federal-tax-rates.insidegov.com/d/a/Dwight-D.-Eisenhower. Just my two cents.
  • Douglas Harvey
    published this page in Whig Forums 2016-02-07 13:35:27 -0500