Mugged by Reality

By April 14, 2016 January 10th, 2019 No Comments

One problem for Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton and their left wing comrades never really goes away. I’m not talking about scandals, bad judgment, poor track records, etc. – all of these slip right off the left wing Teflon. I’m talking about economic reality.

Day to day, lots of news gets buried and lost to memory. So no one really thinks much about Bernie Sanders’ weird history, his offensive, anti-women writings; and aside from politically active conservatives, no one’s bugging Clinton about her emails, Benghazi, or the few dozen scandals that seem to linger around her like body odor. Most people don’t care enough about civics and politics to notice these things, other than a few weeks before Election Day.

But every now and then, events conspire and bring big issues into focus. This week, as taxpayers try to file returns on time and a lot of them fork over more money, pay Obamacare penalties, etc., one of New Jersey’s richest individuals announced that he’d seen enough of NJ’s taxes and was moving himself and his money to Florida.

It’ll leave a big dent in tax revenues, and it left a lot of people wondering who’s next. Wonks call this a “income-tax forecast risk,” but that’s a needless abstraction of a basic concept: NJ will either have less money to spend, or it will have to raise taxes, and it will have fewer places to get it.

Meanwhile, in Connecticut, Governor Dannel Malloy proposed to eliminate(!) state education spending in 28 towns around the state. Fairfield County would be especially hard hit, even as it’s still reeling from the in-process departure of General Electric, which left after an ugly fight with Malloy over GE’s tax burden in Connecticut.

As the Fortune article points out, this week’s events are just the beginning for big spending, high tax jurisdictions.With shrinking tax bases and more wealthy taxpayers and businesses moving, spending cuts are going to become more and more painful for those who stick around.

Finally, in keeping with April 15th tradition, we learned this week that 77.5 million American “taxpayers” will either pay no net federal income taxes, or are net takers (they got back more money in credits, etc. than they paid).

This has been a bad week for liberals who think more taxes will fix everything. But are we getting to a “tipping point”? How many taxpayers in these areas will finally decide they’ve had enough? It is very easy to say the “rich” should pay their “fair share,” but where does this end? And what happens when the “rich” have had enough?