Letter to the Editor – Wolf’s Statement on Norquist

I was not surprised to read in Associated Press (Oct 5th), Rep. Wolf’s position that “everything must be on the table in negotiations to cut the deficit”.  I interpret this “Washington Speak” to include revenue (TAX) increases in future budgets.  I absolutely disagree.  Our tax dollars have been “on the table” & career politicians continue to waste them.!!!  The Federal Government takes in too much money now.  Congress has allowed this unprecedented debt and spending to grow out of control. Big government has been a poor steward of our Nation’s treasure.

Clarke Daily News - Opinion & Editorial

We are approaching federal spending levels at 25% of GDP.!!  This needs to come down to 18%.  We don’t need to be discussing any SPENDING GROWTH.  No more “Revenue Investments”.  Big Government is not working, it is the problem.  We need to begin dismantling this large bureaucracy.  Additionally, consider our Total Tax Burden.  The 30 year historical average has been 18%; the highest has been 20.6%.  The projections with the expiration of the 2001 & 2003 tax cuts & more middle-class Americans require to pay the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) exceed all of this.

I find it disingenuous that Congressman Wolf personally attacks Grover Norquist and calls the American’s for Tax Reform (ATR) Taxpayer Protection Pledge, “a roadblock to realistically reforming our tax code”.  I went to the ATR website and found this information:

Does the Pledge stand in the way of tax reform?

No. While ATR opposes any tax increase as a matter of principle, the Pledge does not require opposition to revenue neutral reform. However, for tax reform to be considered revenue neutral, a tax increase must be tied to an offsetting tax cut of at least equal size.

Generally, the offset must be specified in the same piece of legislation. Furthermore, the tax increase and tax cut must occur in a reasonable and corresponding time window, meaning a tax increase cannot simply be offset by a tax cut in the out-years.

I am not a member of ATR, nor a proponent of Mr. Norquist, but I fully agree with this statement and believe that most fiscal conservatives would also.  It appears to be a good conceptual framework to use in reforming our Tax Code.

When will we see specific Government/Tax Reform proposals introduced as legislation or amendments from Congressman Wolf?  It was a bit ironic to see $1.4T in government savings proposed by Senator Ron Johnson (R-GA) published in the Winchester Star the same day.  In a word, LEADERSHIP.

Jay L. Marts

Frederick County

Comments

  1. Jay Marts is nothing more than a staunch proponent of Starve the Beast. The GOP should turn their backs on this sort of destructive voodoo and return the days of Eisenhower when Republicans actually would raise revenue to fund a budget. Alas, they are now the slaves to Grover and the Kochs. Bless you Frank Wolf for speaking the truth.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Starve_the_beast

  2. I do not object to paying taxes. I object to tax money being spent unwisely. We seem to be lacking a quorum of intelligent adults to discuss what government should actually do. Blindly screaming ‘no new tax’ does not help. Neither does shouting ‘tax the rich’. It has been costly to militarize our country – in both dollars and the erosion of civil liberties and moral authority (it’s not torture if we do it). The Washington direction is to spare no expense to control the population even as they starve – for nutrition or protection from a strident minority. Obama’s failure is that he kept alive too many Bush policies that were leading to constant warfare and perpetual debt. I believe George Will was spot on when he difined a key problem as the ‘serial bribery of congress’. Wolf was brave to speak out since he witnessed Russ Potts’ exile when he committed public truth.

    • I am not really out to “Starve” anbody. I am more than willing pay my taxes (fair share), but expect those funds to be used wisely. I do not believe the Federal government is capable of administering these large social welfare programs. Back in 1960 Defense spending accounted for about 54% of the Federal Budget; Social spending was at 26%. Now 61% of our budget is spent on Social spending & Defense at 22%. I think the Feds should focus on Defense & le the State & locals concentrate on social programs. We send more than enough money to Washington. Most of our requirements could be taken care of at the State & Local level.

      Big Government is not the answer

  3. Another View says:

    I object to paying taxes at an excessive rate, and to fund unconstitutional spending. The current marginal rates on income taxes are way too high and spending on entitlements is wrong. No government should by force of law and arms require some to work for the benefit of others. It is immoral.

    • Bill Templeton says:

      OK, Scrooge…injured veterans shouldn’t expect a grateful public, through its government, to tend their wounds that arose from their service to this country? Those who have fallen on hard times, or lost a job, shouldn’t have some public safety net to catch them if they need it? Those sorts of things are “immoral” because the numbers so affected are more than churches and non-profits can handle?

      Do you include tax subsidies to big corporations, or farm subsidies, in your definition of “immoral entitlements”? If that’s the case, then those who accept farm subsidies, like Bev McKay and other shere in good ol’ Clarke County, have some ‘splainin’ to do.

      Are there abuses? Sure there are, as there is waste. Anything involving humans is ripe for corruption, and abuse, and advantage-taking. But, does that mean that the government shouldn’t provide some sort of help in need?

      • Another View says:

        Those who have fallen on hard times or lost a job should look to themselves, their families and friends and charities for help. Government should not be in the business of providing a “safety net”. No one said a thing about not ministering to wounded soldiers, but I do opposed making a veteran into a welfare case. And no, Bev McKay, GE and GM should not receive government subsidies.

        Clear enough?

        • Fly on the wall says:

          9% of 300,000,000 is around 27,000,000. You really think that 27 million people (the current unemployment #s) can find adequate support from “themselves, their families and friends and charities” without government help? The charities and agencies in place can fully handle that many people? Not sure what planet you live on, but I don’t know that the churches and other agencies around here (like CCAP in Winchester) could handle the full brunt of those needing help.

          • So, what did people do in America before the nanny state became their keepers?

          • Another View says:

            If the federal government wasn’t taking so much money from the producers, and giving it to the takers, there would be a growing economy with full employment. If the federal government wasn’t taking so much money from the producers and giving it to the takers, there would be plenty of money for those who truly need it and seek help from families, friends and charities. And if the federal government wasn’t taking so much money from the producers and giving it to the takers, then it would be unable to meddle in every aspect of our lives.

  4. I do not read this as “Washington Speak”. I think it’s common sense talking. I also do not think Rep. Wolf is in favor of higher taxes. It’s hard to judge without knowing the whole context regarding his comment. A link to the AP article would have been helpful.

    Certain items have traditionally been off limits when considering spending cuts or restructuring. At or near the top of the list has been defense spending. Also in this category is Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, education, and numerous other entitlement programs.

    I interpret his comments as meaning that he considers the above items on the table. He also may consider changes to the tax structure. I do not know the specifics. Until I do I will reserve judgment on that issue. History has certainly shown Rep. Wolf is fiscally conservative although maybe not as much as many of us would like.

    • Keenque: Clarke Daily News was kind enough to to post that article as well. Go back to the “Home Page” & you will be able to see it.

      I don’t doubt that our Congressman has our best interests in mind. I think Wolf is an American Patriot. I believe big Government solutions are not working. I think Frank is a “Big Goverment” Republican. That time has passed. We need to return to a smaller limited Federal Government.

      My intent was not to “attack” Rep Wolf… I thought he attacked Norquist. Stop the personal attacks & lets debate the ideas/issues & how to solve problems.

      My main point was no more Federal Govt tax inceases. They have enough of our money. When & if they can show us good stewardship of a Federal program we can consider keeping it.
      J

  5. Jesse Russell says:

    Ideology such as the editor’s is what keeps this country from moving forward. If there is waste in the Federal government, and there is waste, then that, cutting spending and raising some taxesshould part of the equation and helping resolve our economic condition. Why not raise taxes for 5 years with a sunset clause such as the Republicans did to lower taxes with a sunset clause. I remember when the Bush administration sent me a whopping $300. Didn’t change a thing in my life. Didn’t change a thing in the health of the economy. But millions of $300 checks sent out did help rid ourselves of a Treasury surplus. No respected economist states that taxes only or cutting spending only will work, but must be a combination of the two, yet we continue to allow the loudest ideologist control our congress to ensure that nothing will be done and the working man seems to be the only one suffering.