Monday, October 24, 2011

Rick Perry Steals Stockwell Day's "Flat Tax" idea, who Stole it From the CTF, Who Stole it From ....

In 2006, Time magazine raised the alarm over Stephen Harper's control of the media, which included his unprecedented secrecy of what goes on in cabinet meetings.

However, if you want some idea of what they might sound like, watch the Republican debates and listen to their candidates. They all speak the same language.

This week Rick Perry is touting the "flat tax" as an innovative way to restructure the tax system, and it will be even flatter than Herman Cain's 9-9-9. The only thing flatter will be their heads.

This is not a new idea but one that has been flogged for decades. "Reduce government so you can drown it in a bathtub", Grover Norquist, and his Americans For Tax Reform, have been promoting this for twenty-five years.

Canadian Kevin Avram, attended a conference in Austin, Texas where he met a representative of the “Association of Concerned Taxpayers”, then headed up by Norquist. He came home and created the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, once headed up by Jason Kenney.

In 1998, the CTF invited Stockwell Day, then head of the Alberta Treasury, to a briefing on how this tax plan to make the wealthy even wealthier, works.

Mike Harris and Preston Manning wrote a paper Building Prosperity in a Canada Strong and Free, in which they not only tout the "flat tax" but also want to end Capital gains taxes.

When Stephen Harper spoke at the Frontier Institute, another vehicle of the corporate sector, there were protests against the Institutes policies, including, yes, the "flat tax". He snuck out the back door, his Modus Operandi.

Jim Flaherty also stated that once the books are balanced (or he engages in a bit more creative bookkeeping), he is going to "flatten" taxes.

All of these neocons sound like parrots on crack. "Perry wants a flat tax", "Flaherty wants a flat tax", "Harper wants a flat tax", "Norquist wants a flat tax", Tea Party wants a flat tax" ...."

As Joe Holley reminds us:
Perry is hoping to capitalize on universal frustration with the current system, draw attention away from Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 flat tax proposal and create a clear distinction between himself and Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts governor has been critical of a flat-tax system in the past, arguing that a tax structure that was too flat would hurt the middle class.

A flat tax would indeed be more regressive than the current complicated system. It would reduce the percentage that high-income earners pay, while increasing the burden on lower-income groups. That’s fine with some conservatives, who believe that wealthier earners shouldn’t be shouldering so much of the tax burden.
That's it in a nutshell. Creating a tax system that further widens the gap between rich and poor. Just what we need.

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