Tuesday, November 30, 2010
In “America By Heart” folks will get a feel for some of my favorite writers and thinkers. One of them is the great economist Thomas Sowell. Some of you may recall that in “Going Rogue” I mentioned Sowell’s famous book “A Conflict of Visions” to explain the way the liberal or “progressive” world view and philosophy differs from the conservative view. Sowell’s articles are always worth reading, and his most recent column is no exception. He reminds us where our attention needs to be during this lame-duck session of Congress. He notes that the Democrats have articulated their tired class warfare argument about “tax cuts for the rich,” but conservatives have still not articulated our proven time-tested argument that tax cuts spur economic growth, which in turn helps everyone from all income levels and increases tax revenue as the economy grows. Sowell reminds us:
“These are not new arguments on either side. They go back more than 80 years. Over that long span of time, there have been many sharp cuts in tax rates under presidents Calvin Coolidge, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush. So we don’t need to argue in a vacuum. There is a track record.
“What does that record say? It says, loud and clear, that cuts in tax rates do not mean cuts in tax revenues. In all four of these administrations, of both parties, so-called “tax cuts for the rich” led to increased tax revenues — with people earning high incomes paying not only a larger sum total of tax revenues, but even a higher proportion of all tax revenues.
“Most important of all, these tax-rate reductions spurred economic activity, which we definitely need today.”
But as Sowell later points out, having a proven time-tested policy isn’t enough if we don’t articulate it. We need to remind people that tax cuts help everyone. And we should also remind the Democrats that many of the so-called “rich” they’re dismissing are our small business owners who account for 70% of all job creation in this country. At a time when we need job growth, we should not target job creators with tax hikes. Closing our deficit gap requires us to cut spending, but we also need to spur economic growth. With that in mind, the last thing we should do is hamper our economic innovators and entrepreneurs with excessive taxes, overly burdensome regulation, and more uncertainty. This is not a difficult argument to make. It’s common sense.
- Sarah Palin