Time for Fair Tax Act
Poverty should never be the goal of a government tax structure, yet our income tax is designed to keep working people poor.
Hidden corporate taxes raise the cost of goods and services while the payroll tax ensures less take-home pay for buying goods and services.
Although the wealthiest avoid paying federal income taxes thanks to deductions, their investment capital needed for job creation is forced overseas to avoid capital gains taxes. Not only do the working poor get poorer and the wealthy shift capital overseas, our industries can’t compete in global markets.
Capital gains taxes are higher than the average tax rate for the 34 nations in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. And with our corporate tax being the highest in the world, there is little incentive for foreign investment to come to the United States.
A consumption tax, the Fair Tax Act of 2013, filed in the House this month with a record number of first-day co-sponsors, would end personal income taxes, business income taxes, payroll taxes, capital gains taxes, estate and gift taxes, and alternative minimum tax. It would generate equal tax revenues while creating jobs.
Learn more about it at www.fairtax.org.
Kansas’ failed tax plan
As consumers, we want to know the bottom line. Whether we’re buying a car, a computer or even a new pair of running shoes, we prefer to ask questions upfront so there are fewer surprises at the end. When it comes to paying taxes, we want the same.
That’s why Kansans should view the income tax plan described in Nick Jordan’s Feb. 11 column, “A plan to boost growth,” with eyes wide open. This tax plan might lower costs for some Kansans — primarily the wealthiest — but it’ll surprise the majority of Kansans.
For instance, 40 percent of Kansas taxpayers will see little to no tax relief.
The biggest income tax breaks go to the wealthiest; working Kansans will be nickeled-and-dimed through higher sales and property taxes, not to mention seeing more state dollars cut from schools, roads and public safety.
Proponents of this tax plan are wrong to look to no-income tax states such as Texas. Those states have higher unemployment, more poverty, worse educational outcomes, and higher sales and property taxes than we have here in Kansas.
Kansans deserve to know the bottom line before they buy into this tax plan.
Kansas Center for
Changes in America
The fact is that if America is to survive, it must change its policies and attitudes to meet the needs of a changing population.
America cannot continue to deny human rights to a growing number of Americans to satisfy a declining number of the bigoted religious right.
America was built on freedom, democracy and equality, but there are those who have tried to take that away under the guise of self-righteousness, Christianity and judgment all in the supposed name of Jesus. Gratefully, the majority will not allow that to happen, but the majority of people will not be able to quell the discomfort of the minority as they are forced to tread into the uncharted territory of fairness, equality and free agency that the minority of people profess to believe in.
You don’t have to believe this. You certainly don’t have to like it.
But you may want to place it somewhere in the back of your mind for future use.
It is happening whether we like it or not.
And to that I shout a resounding, amen.
Thank God and hallelujah.
Bishop Finn, pope
If a pope can resign, so can a bishop (2-12, A1, “Benedict to end Vatican reign”).
Pay workers better
Can we accept the premise that America will always have poor people?
The reason being that there are many horrible jobs at the bottom of the pay scale that are necessary for our society to function.
These include the maids who clean the toilets in the fancy hotels we reside in while on vacation. Also, the dishwashers, sometimes working 12-hour shifts in the five-star restaurants we like to dine in.
Then there is the back-breaking work of handpicking lettuce for minimum wage. What about the workers at Wal-Mart?
All most Americans want is a roof over their heads, a car and the financial ability to send their children to college.
I just wish the chief executive officers had it in their hearts to relinquish some of the millions in their salaries to pay these very important workers a decent wage and benefits so they can have a piece of the American pie.
With all the push for background checks for firearms, why do we not insist on background checks for purchases of automobiles? After all automobile crashes cause far more injuries and deaths than firearms.
When a vehicle is sold there is no requirement of a check for driving history or insurance coverage on private vehicle sales.
Any one of us could sell a vehicle to someone who could have a suspended license, be a drunken driver or have a criminal record.
There is no amendment that granting a right for the purchase or use of a vehicle like the Second Amendment gives for a firearm.
Also I noticed several letter writers mentioned that the Second Amendment was written when only muskets were available.
When the First Amendment was written, we only had the printed word not radio, television or the Internet. If the founders couldn’t imagine semi-automatic firearms they sure couldn’t have imagined all of our modern ways that we express or First Amendment rights.
Maybe to be true to the conditions that existed when the Constitution was written we should all give up or modern ways of exercising our First Amendment rights.
GOP must cooperate
Dear Sen. Roy Blunt and other House and Senate Republicans:
Many Republicans lost in the 2012 elections because of the hate speech by many members of your party, including Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach spoke negatively on immigration. Romney’s 47 percent comment on takers was captured on video.
Then you expect all of those groups that your party attacked to vote for your party.
If Republicans want to win in 2016, they have to stop the hate speech and talk to everyone in America. Your party members and GOP leaders must listen to everyone.
I was a Republican when President Ronald Reagan ran for office. After President Reagan, I could no longer support the demeaning remarks about Latinos and against President Barack Obama and his family.
There were attacks on women by Limbaugh and others.
We need a united U.S. A divided house cannot stand alone.
President Obama needs Republicans’ help, not division or the blocking of his ideas. People are hurting. Millions of jobs have gone overseas without pressure from Congress.
Do the right thing, Sen. Blunt, for America.
Florentino Camacho Jr.
Crying need in Kansas
A few years ago, you published a letter I wrote concerning mental health care for young people. My wife and I were foster parents at the time.
I wrote because millions of dollars were proposed to be spent on a bridge when mental health care for children was woefully underfunded. There is still a shortage of counselors and other professionals.
They don’t have a lot of time to spend with the children. The easiest thing for them to do is prescribe a medication to address the symptoms.
There was a girl in our home so out of control that she hurt my wife. That’s when we left foster care, because it was difficult to get the girl proper assistance.
I am now a Court Appointed Special Advocate volunteer for children and have seen young people with obvious problems end up in the custody of the state. Additional workers might have been allowed more time to spend with these young people.
New Strawn, Kan.
Teachers under siege
It looks as if the right-wing conservatives in the Kansas Legislature have begun to do what they have promised they would do: destroy the teachers’ unions. There are bills in both houses to strip teachers of their right to discuss any political or electoral issue through a union.
Next they will go after collective bargaining, due process and teacher retirement. This, together with the Legislature’s denial of proper funding, will eventually lead to schools no better than those in Alabama, Mississippi and other states that have weak or nonexistent unions, poor retirement plans for teachers and low test scores.
If we care about public education, we need to hold our representatives accountable by letting them know that public schools are a state responsibility.
We can’t continue to go this direction and expect Kansas to continue to have strong schools and attract the best and brightest to the teaching profession.