Saturday, May 9, 2009

Reality Bites

Coming to the sudden realization that all that proposed government sponsored health care isn't going to pay for itself, The Messiah's administration is closing more of those pesky loopholes in the tax code to make up the shortfall.
The Obama administration will propose $60 billion in new tax increases over 10 years on wealthy estates, businesses and others to make up for shortfalls in its fund to pay for an expensive overhaul of the health-care system.

The measures go beyond plans the White House has announced in the past few weeks. Officials said that upon further analysis they realized that they had overestimated savings and tax increases proposed in February to help pay the bill.

The full proposals will come Monday when the White House releases a detailed analysis of its budget blueprint. Administration officials described the new proposals not as tax increases, but as eliminating "tax loopholes."

One element would raise an estimated $24 billion over 10 years by tightening estate-tax rules, giving taxpayers less flexibility to minimize their liability on inherited goods by claiming a different value on the same item for different transactions.

A second element, which would raise $10 billion over 10 years, would require businesses and others who make payments to corporations to report such payments to the Internal Revenue Service. Under current law, payments to individuals are required to be reported on a 1099 form, but no such requirements exist for similar payments to corporations. The goal is to make sure that the recipient corporations report all their taxable income.

How to pay for a health-care overhaul estimated to cost more than a trillion dollars over a decade is one of the trickiest questions facing the administration and Congress. The White House has proposed a combination of health-care spending cuts and tax increases.

Think about what this says for a moment.

First, more taxes on inheritances. How freaking sad is it when you can't even get out of paying taxes by dying? Remember that every nickel of an inheritance has been taxed, repeatedly, throughout the life of the person who accrued the wealth - income taxes, payroll taxes, property taxes, sales taxes...the list goes on. The idea of the government scooping another huge chunk when money passes to yet another overtaxed citizen due to the death of a loved one is just plain wrong.

Second, new taxes on business. The concept itself sounds a bit fishy, but there's not enough information here to really understand what is meant by "payments to corporations." In any case, anyone who believes that a tax on a business is not a tax on those who avail themselves of the services the business provides should get in touch with me - I have a bridge for sale in Brooklyn that I think you will just adore!

And, finally, re-read the last paragraph of that story. This health care plan is estimated to cost a trillion dollars. That's $3,333.33 per person that must be collected in new taxes. They plan to pay for it through "a combination of health-care spending cuts and tax increases." Wait a spending cuts? How can they cut spending on health-care in a health-care plan? Perhaps by rationing the care that is given? Perhaps by deciding that if you are too old, or too fat, or smoke cigarettes, you haven't earned certain kinds of health-care? Imagine a system where your ability to receive medical care is determined not by what you and your doctor think is prudent, or what you can afford to pay for, but by a formula created by the same people who wrote the thousands of pages of tax code under which we all struggle. A formula that considers not you, as an individual, but your age, weight, gender and lifestyle and the cost of the services you request, and calculates the statistical likelihood of the procedure being successful to determine whether you will be allowed to have it. If you develop a cancer that is considered incurable you will not have the option of extending your life for another five years through treatment. If your vision could be saved, but you are too old and the treatment is expensive, you will be told you've seen enough.

Already there are huge numbers of doctors who refuse Medicare and Medicaid patients because the government drastically restricts the amount of money they will be paid for their services. If this kind of health care becomes reality in this country, you can kiss your quality of life goodbye.

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