by Max Brantley
Ben Stein writes a smart weekly business column for the New York Times. He's a Republican A conservative. No fan of taxes. Likes John McCain. But he happens to not be insane. He calls McCain's hand on his promise not to raise taxes and to continue the Bush tax cuts.
I would like to pay no tax at all. I could have so much more to prepare for onrushing old age.
But the unhappy fact is that it’s necessary to raise my taxes and the taxes of all upper-income Americans. (I do wish, however, that “upper income” started just a dollar above me.)
The sad truth of the last two two-term Republican presidents is that their economic premise, the key part of their economic game plan, simply has not done what it’s supposed to do.
That is, cutting taxes, especially on upper-income Americans, does not generate so much economic activity that it replaces all the lost I.R.S. take and then some.
Fine, you say? Starve government? If only Bush had done that. But government kept growing and it needs more military billions still. Not to mention bridges to nowhere, etc.