That Sioux Falls paper spins its wheels talking to nihilists who don’t want to pay taxes:
“We’ve created a problem that I don’t think has a solution,” Clint Brown, 42, a recruiter for Manpower, said.
The father of three said he and his wife both work, but they haven’t been able to save money for their daughters’ college funds because much of it has gone to the federal government. While Brown said he’s skeptical of candidates’ plans to reform the tax code, he hopes there can be more conversation about lowering tax rates for the middle class [Dana Ferguson, “Voters Clutch Wallets as Candidates Mull Tax Reform,” that Sioux Falls paper, 2016.10.08].
Translation: Oh, woe, there is no solution… but solve my personal budgeting problems by not taxing me! (Sub-translation: I can repave I-29 and fight ISIS by myself.)
A fireworks vendor in the same story says he wants the feds not to raise taxes on small businesses like his. He says he’ll vote for the Republican ticket… which suggests he has failed to notice that Hillary Clinton has proposed not only not raising his taxes but simplifying them with a standard deduction for business.
Republicans John Thune and Kristi Noem tell Ferguson that we need to simplify the brackets, which is Republican code for cut taxes for our rich friends. We have progressive tax rates on marginal income to better distribute the burden to those who can bear it. With easy access to spreadsheets and tax prep software, there’s not reason we couldn’t optimize that fair burden-sharing by setting a different tax bracket for every dollar of marginal income, a nice smooth mathematical curve instead of seven stair-step brackets. Reducing those steps as Thune and Noem want inherently increases the unfairness of the tax system toward lower-income tax earners.
Democrats Jay Williams and Paula Hawks recognize that the problem with the tax code is not complexity but inequity: stop giving breaks to the rich and tell corporations to keep America great by paying their fair share.
Ferguson does at least wheedle from Noem an admission that a system that favors Donald Trump is not fair:
The people with the best attorneys end up getting the biggest breaks [Rep. Kristi Noem, in Ferguson, 2016.10.08].
O.K., so Kristi didn’t say “Donald Trump” in that quote, but she could have.
Small business, middle class, you want tax reform? You want to put away more money for kids and college? Don’t vote for the corporate mouthpieces. Vote for Clinton, Williams, and Hawks, the Democrats who will bring you, not our corporate overlords, real tax reform.