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October 31, 2008

Welfare Checks and Military Disintegration

Joe Charlebois

Ninety-five percent of taxpayers won't see tax increases, astounding! Ninety-five percent of Americans will receive a tax cut, amazing! Only 60% of Americans pay income taxes. What?


According to the Internal Revenue Service, 97% of all income taxes are paid by the top 50% of all wage earners. In fact, 86% of all income taxes are confiscated from the top 25% of wage earners. Even more startling is the fact that the top 1% of wage earners provides an enormous 39% of personal income taxes to fill the federal government's coffers.


Alexis de Tocqueville said: "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money." When the Democrat-controlled Congress is seated in January, it will either be in a position to carry this to its full conclusion, or it will be somewhat counterbalanced by a Republican administration that may or may not bend to their demands.


De Tocqueville was right, Congress has realized that it can indeed bribe the public with its own money, and it have for a long time. It has done this through special pet projects, earmarks, pork-barrel spending. Call it what you like, but Congress has bribed its constituents with the constituents' own hard earned cash.


This has nearly guaranteed that as long as the money pours back into the district, "Old So and So" will be re-elected time and time again.


What could be worse, you ask? The Democrat-controlled Congress could always bribe its constituents with someone else's money. The next Congress has its plans to confiscate the monies from the evil wealthy?


Soon more people will be receiving federal subsidies than those who are paying. Who will be there to say enough is enough? Who will be able to halt this redistribution of wealth?


Congressman Roscoe Bartlett, of Frederick, is a man who believes in the proper use of the tax dollar. He does not believe in the scheme presented by presidential candidate Barack Obama that would give tax breaks to 95% of Americans. He understands that if 95% of Americans are to receive a reduction in income tax that would mean that approximately 40% of Americans would actually get a welfare check.


Yes, Americans will begin receiving welfare checks. There is no other way to define these income tax "refunds" than welfare payments.


The argument that the left uses to justify this redistribution of income is that working families are currently paying too much in taxes. The taxes that these families are paying are to be used to fund Social Security and Medicare. If Senator Obama's "refund" is coming from Social Security and Medicare, how will it be funded in the future? How will is stay solvent?


If the beneficiaries of these payments are essentially paying less toward Social Security and Medicare, should they still be entitled to full benefits upon reaching retirement age?


This line of action will create a larger problem by attempting to fix another. To the left, this does not matter. This is an issue of power and control.


Representative Barney Frank (D., MA) has projected future budgets where these shortfalls would be covered by a 20% reduction in military spending. This country is currently in the midst of fighting on two fronts in the war on terror. Russia is flexing its military might in former Soviet Bloc territory. China is spending unprecedented levels in bulking up its military. This is not a wise position to put our military in.


If Senators Obama, Joe Biden (D., DE) and Harry Reid (D., NV) along with Congressman Frank and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., CA) expect that pulling our troops from Iraq will in effect subsidize these programs and pay for the welfare checks to the lower income brackets, they are sorely mistaken.


The unintended consequences that would come with this line of thinking would be disastrous. In no time at all al Qaeda would pool its resources and pour back into Iraq. Iran would send in insurgents to disrupt Iraq’s the emerging democracy and keep it in an unstable and inferior position. We would then be forced to go back into Iraq, be ready to open a new front with Iran, or let the Middle East devolve into the epitome of chaos.


Congress Bartlett is one of the military's strongest allies in Congress. He is the senior Republican on the House Armed Services Committee. We can not afford to lose anymore members of Congress who have the ultimate goal of seeing America win the war on terror. He will not put our troops in a position to fail.


What is for certain is that Mr. Bartlett has dedicated his career to keeping America strong both in terms of freedom and the military strength to defend those freedoms.


We cannot afford deep cuts in military funding to allow the redistribution of wealth in the United States. With the purpose of buying off the bottom 40% of Americans with welfare checks, our national security could be significantly jeopardized.


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