Over at our sister site, Townhall.com, Carol Platt Liebau and Kevin Glass issue a timely reminder. At the same time that the president shrilly demands passage of a rule to force millionaires to “pay their fair share” of taxes (passage the Senate didn’t deliver), administration officials and federal workers owe an astonishing amount in back taxes.
Some 36 members of Obama’s executive staff owe more than $800,000 in back taxes, while federal workers owe more than $3.4 billion in unpaid taxes, according to the Internal Revenue Service.
Granted, we can’t wait for perfect compliance to reform the tax code, just as we can’t wait for the elimination of every instance of waste, fraud and abuse before we reform entitlement programs. The noncompliance of so many members of the Obama administration and the federal government, though, might reveal yet another reason why they target “the rich” for tax increases. Because they don’t pay their own taxes, they don’t trust others to pay their fair share without special enforcement, either. “The rich” — as such a small portion of the population — are easy to monitor and easy to milk. Few millionaires would take the risk of fudging their tax returns — especially since the IRS is, in fact, auditing more millionaires these days.
Meanwhile, the Buffett Rule isn’t even the most disastrous tax the Obama administration has proposed of late. John Ransom calls attention to the many pitfalls of a global minimum tax, which Joe Biden recently touted:
A global minimum tax is a tax on all profits made by nominally US companies that operate overseas. They operate overseas for various reasons, but one big reason is because corporate taxes are higher in the US than overseas. And to fix high corporate taxes in the US, the Obama administration proposes even HIGHER TAXES on corporations. …
Not content to tax the rich here in the United States, Democrats are so hungry for welfare revenues that they now want to tax all revenue, everywhere, ignoring international borders, international waters and universal common sense.
And guess who is gonna pay the tax? When they toll the bell “rich” during this campaign, understand that that bell tolls for thee.
Because, while the “rich” may be someone across town in the US, the “rich” in Obama’s global sense, isyou. This is a tax that will fall most heavily on the poor and middle income earners.
The truth is, most of the tax increases the president has proposed will eventually hit the middle class, thanks to the phenomenon of trickle-down taxation. Grover Norquist thinks the American people won’t fall for tax-the-rich rhetoric again because they know eventually, in the eyes of the government, everybody will be considered “rich.” I hope he’s right — but the president’s opportunistic emphasis on the Buffett Rule during an election year suggests the president thinks his rhetoric will work.
The tax battle is not about “paying a fair share.” If it were, Obama would direct the injunction to pay up directly at the tax evaders in his administration. It is and always has been about wealth redistribution and centralization of power.