|Rep. Ed Emery's report to his constituents dated June 24, 2009, is entitled, "Life, Liberty, Pursuit of Happiness." He introduces it with a quote from Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis' having warned us to be on guard to protect our liberty and concluding that the "greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal well meaning but without understanding."
Emery's theme of liberty is further defined by his citation of Abraham Lincoln's "American view of liberty" that "made government answerable to the people and not the other way around," American patriots' view of government not as a "source of security but a protector of opportunity," and Benjamin Franklin's belief that any "society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both." Toward Franklin's view, Emery concludes that Americans have compromised the "exhilaration of personal liberty because of the intoxication of dependency--exchanging liberty for security."
From here Emery seem to take a huge leap. He writes:
"One of the most powerful enemies of personal liberty is the income tax code --federal and state because of its punitive and manipulative nature. Reforming tax policy to the Fair Tax model would empower each of us and weaken politicians and corporations. It could be the first major step back toward government of the people. The Fair Tax is constitutional, equitable, enforceable, and do-able in Missouri. It encourages entrepreneurship instead of dependency.
Okay, at this point the only liberty I see is the freedom to leave Missouri and buy products and services for less cost in adjoining states with lower or non-existent taxes. And somebody needs to explain why politicians and corporations would be "weakened." Isn't one argument for the "Fair Tax" that it strengthens corporations by removing business taxes that allegedly make them less competitive? And Emery is a "politician." Why would he want to "weaken" his position? Whose side is he really on?
We're involved with semantics here. Are we trying to confuse the public by throwing around words. Oh my god, don't take away my liberty, especially in choosing Fair Tax over income tax. After all, we all find April 15th distasteful.
"State politicians and lobbyists would lose much of their power to control our choices. By taxing consumption instead of income, we would stop punishing success by taxing you more for doing well. Government could no longer manipulate your choices by punishing you for some and rewarding you for others according to some official or bureaucrat's idea of how you should behave. The most compelling reason for abolishing the state income tax for a consumption tax is restoration of personal liberties."
Huh? Restoration of personal liberties means that people in the position of making six figures or more shouldn't be penalized for their entrepreneurial abilities. What does it mean for the person flipping hamburgers who can't seem to rise above that station in life?
Oh, I forgot. The department of revenue would be empowered to provide an annual sales tax rebate for each "qualified family" that are "sharing a "common residence." Looks like "Joey" will have to leave for purposes of gaining a second rebate.
No mention, of course, is made of expense in administering this rebate program. And, u-m-m, with this rebate program aren't we back to that "intoxication of dependency" that Emery deplores?
The approval of the Fair Tax by voters legitimizes language in the bill stating that "...no tax shall be imposed upon any income derived from any source within this state." How are social security and pensions treated with this language?
Voters approving a Fair Tax in the next general election also are giving legislators, according to the bill's language, one opportunity to raise the level of tax from a suggested five and eleven one-hundredths percent to whatever is necessary to make sure that the amount of revenue created by the tax is equal to the amount lost. Critics are maintaining that the stated tax amount in no way covers the amount lost through elimination of the existing tax structure.
So, people, a 'yes' vote at the polls in part would amend the Constitution of the State of Missouri to eliminate individual and corporate income tax...and to enact a Fair Tax of at least five and eleven one-hundredths percent on new purchases (off to the flea market we go) of goods and services (let's barter these) and exempt property purchased for business or investment from the sales tax.....
A 'no' vote would not amend the Constitution of the State of Missouri.
So, how do you want to demonstrate your empowerment?
For a previous article go here.