Obama’s Targeted Tax Increases

Tax cuts are not necessarily a good thing. Why? Because most tax cuts are “targeted” tax cuts. “Targeted” means selected as deserving by politicians. Although morally superior to a subsidy, since a company is being allowed to keep what’s theirs rather than getting money from somebody else, it’s still a manipulation by government.

Obama has introduced a new version of “targeted” tax cuts. It’s called a targeted tax increase. Only someone as liberal and socialist as Obama could have come up with this, and then claim it’s a free market reform.

Obama wants to get rid of tax breaks for oil companies. He claims that they’re making enough money already. But what’s “enough” money? At what point do oil companies make “too much” and why is this figure deemed too much? People who have life or death power over the income of private companies — oil companies or otherwise — ought to be required to state what they consider a reasonable limit on profit, and why they chose that amount. They also should be obliged to explain what gives them the right to decide and impose this limit.

The only kind of tax cuts that are moral, as well as economic in the long-run, are across-the-board tax cuts. Across-the-board tax cuts are nondiscriminatory. They don’t pick or play favorites. They are the government’s way of communicating to its citizens, including those in the business arena, that, “We have too much of your money already. It’s yours, and we’re giving it back.”

It’s not the right of government to decide who deserves to have its taxes cut, and who doesn’t. Similarly, it’s not Obama’s prerogative to decide that oil companies should have their taxes raised while others should not. It’s not economical, either. The reason oil companies make so much money is that they provide an essential commodity to all of human society. There’s huge and ever-present demand for fuel to literally light up, heat and make civilization possible. Obama feels there should be additional forms of energy, ones he considers cleaner and superior to oil. He apparently believes that if he makes it less profitable to produce oil, it will suddenly become more profitable to produce other forms of energy. This is preposterous. If alternative forms of energy that could actually compete with oil existed, they would already be on the market. They would be gradually rising in price as demand for them rose, while oil would gradually decrease in price as demand for it declined.

Obama is attempting to change an underlying cause by looking at the symptom only. He thinks that by making oil companies less profitable it will suddenly become profitable to produce energy forms that simply don’t work that well, such as solar and wind power. If solar and wind power were really all that effective, consumers would be demanding them in the marketplace already. Instead, it’s only politicians and guilt-ridden, rich liberals who think we should have solar and wind power as our main sources of energy.

Obama likes to come across as a visionary and a forward-thinker. In practice, he’s a destroyer. The only way he knows how to bring commodities he thinks are valuable to market is to obliterate what already exists. Think Tony Soprano, only with more power and prestige. Obama already did this with health care. He thinks that everyone should be on government Medicare or Medicaid, not just the elderly or the poor. In order to make this happen, he cannot expand those programs — the government is already trillions of dollars in debt. So he destroys the already hampered private market for health insurance, driving doctors and patients into nationalized care, probably in 3-5 years time. Note that funding for Medicare and Medicaid will not increase. In fact, he’s going to decrease funding for those programs just as millions of new people flood into them following the death of private insurance. There will be more people depending on government for medicine than ever before, with far less money in the government to pay for it. This is one example of how Obama is a destroyer, not a visionary.

Obama’s energy policy, not yet implemented, operates on the same premise of destruction. If the private market will not or cannot do the impossible — i.e., make inefficient energy sources popular and profitable — then he’ll just have to hamper, or even destroy, our existing sources of energy instead. Watch for him to sacrifice oil companies the way he sacrificed health insurance companies as oil prices are driven even higher by increased taxes and regulation.

It’s ironic. When Obama or any liberal socialist “targets” an industry with tax cuts or tax increases, it’s considered both morally proper and economically helpful. Liberals are not blamed for violence by using the terminology of warfare. This is because, at least according to the liberal and socialist mindset that dominates government, media and academic culture more generally, things that liberals do are always the right thing. Even when they destroy us.