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BUDGET: How does raising sales tax help?

Letter by Edward C. Boyd, Tacoma on Nov. 22, 2011 at 11:44 am with 27 Comments »
November 22, 2011 12:52 pm

How does raising the sales tax (TNT, 11-22) help those of us already struggling to survive day to day? If my dog is thirsty, should I cut back on his water?

I’m not a financial expert, nor do I excel at physics, but I know that knocking more holes in the hull won’t keep my sinking boat afloat.

Leave a comment Comments → 27
  1. Mr. Boyd, if McDonald’s can’t produce a Big Mac and break even by selling it for $2.00 do they keep the price the same and keep going in debt? How about gasoline prices?

    Now I guess you don’t have to drive to McDonald’s and buy a Big Mac, but based on the line at the drive through, it doesn’t look like a price increase is putting McDonalds out of business.

    If the main road to your own is flooded in the next two days and DOT comes out to make sure that emergency vehicles can get to you if needed, think about that extra half cent on every dollar you spend.

  2. alindasue says:

    If your boat is already sinking, wouldn’t you want to be able to find a port or dock nearby to limp to? What if there was no dock or port to limp to because the people who were supposed to build it were laid off due to budget cuts…

    You see, when you cut budgets, you have to careful not to cut them so far that you are essentially shooting yourself in the foot. Those who are struggling day to day to get by are those very people who are being hurt by the budget cuts.

    Take, for example, shortly after the new budget cuts take effect, you become one of those many people who find themselves laid off. Through perseverance you find a job, but the pay isn’t nearly as high and, like many companies these days, your new employer doesn’t offer medical benefits. No worry, you can apply for low cost coverage through Basic Health… except Basic Health no longer exists. It was totally eliminated this time in the last budget cut (as is currently slated to happen). What would you do when you or your child become ill?

    Even if I donated everything I own to the cause, I, myself, could not contribute enough to save the program. However, if everyone in the state contributed a few cents with every non-food purchase, it would be enough to make a huge difference – and since lower income families do a greater percent of their spending on non-taxed items like food, they would be less affected by a sales tax increase than those of us with a bit more money to spare.

    An increase in sales tax may not be everyone’s favorite idea, but I feel it just might be a necessary one.

  3. sandblower says:

    If your boat is already sinking, it is only a matter time before it will be sunk. It is then that you better hope that the state can come to your aid. Nobody else will. Pay your 1 cent on every two dollars you spend now and when your boat is finally done for you might just get it all back in the form of assistance.
    While you are waiting for your boat to sink there are others whose boats have already sunk. They need help now.
    Had enought of the sinking boat metaphore yet?

  4. LarryFine says:

    Great analogy Edward. As we have been told by the “progressives”, a sales tax is the most regressive of all taxes… it hurts the lowest income the hardest.

    Maybe… they want your boat to sink. Misery loves company and democrats love dependents…

  5. If my boat was sinking I’d pay to have it fixed. The repair shop doesn’t work for free.

    Don’t people with sinking boats pay to have them towed to shore?

    I guess some people “give up the ship” while others “plot a better course”

  6. From Godfather III – “but our ships must all sail in the same direction”

  7. Fibonacci says:

    Larry
    Worried about that regressive tax huh? That must put you in the camp of those that favor the state income tax, since it is ont regressive.

    Come on Lar, you know you are against ANY tax, that old “regressive” argument is just to try to make yo sound reasonable.

  8. LarryFine says:

    Hey sis, do you disagree that the sales tax is the most regressive ?

  9. PumainTacoma says:

    My half penny cut in half is now in the mail to you.

  10. sandblower says:

    A sales tax is regressive and Washington is among the worst in that respect because there is no income tax which would shift the balance to the wealthy. Progressives have tried several times to shift the burden off the poor and middle only to be stymied by the extreme right. For the extreme right to find fault now with a half cent increase in the sales tax is an example of intellectual dishonesty at its most profane.

  11. SadujTogracse says:

    I have no problem with a state income tax IF the sales tax is totally eliminated. So far none of the plans have called for that. I’ll be darned if I allow the state 2 ways to screw me over. BTW, this is the same reasoning I use in my opposition to Cain’s 999 plan. Sorry but I will never support any plan that allows for a national sales tax as long as we have a national income tax.

  12. alindasue says:

    The thing is that in Washington state, where food items are generally not taxed, the sales tax is not regressive. The largest percentage of spending in the budget of a low income family is for food. It is the higher income families who can afford more taxable non-food items and would end up paying more of the sales tax increase.

  13. LarryFine says:

    Gotta love the leftist idealouge constantly changing their arguments to suit the current debate.

  14. If someone doesn’t work, they probably favor a state income tax.

  15. alindasue– if poorer people spend ALL of their money on food, then i could understand your point. but if you were reality based and stuck to the premise, you would realize that those in the lower income levels are the same people who are eligible for food stamps (are you suggsting that they should only deserve food and nothing else?). thus your assessment that food goods are the most indicative expenditure of effective tax rates is rendered mute.

  16. rw– if someone makes a higher than average wage….then they probably favor sales tax… your point?

  17. SadujTogracse says:

    Ahhh, that makes sense. No wonder the OWS folks favor a state income tax.

  18. NickDixson says:

    quick – somone say “dirty hippies”. We have to stay in cadence

  19. aha no wonder occupy supports taxes that are not Regressive… those commie bastards, wanting our country to fail them…

  20. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    If my boat was sinking I’d pay to have it fixed. The repair shop doesn’t work for free.

    And I don’t hit-up my neighbors to cover the cost of repairs.

    Don’t people with sinking boats pay to have them towed to shore?

    So… my boat is sinking… quick, make the call to Vessel Assist! Yeah, they are sure to be onsite within… say forty five minutes/ an hour maybe – plenty of time to tow my now-sunk boat to shore. Yep I would pay good money for that.

    FWIW, I have never had to pay for a boat tow, and have gladly helped other boaters on many occasions – free of charge.

  21. When you are unwilling to pay, you get what you pay for.

  22. There are several things wrong here on so many levels. Increasing taxes on a population that can hardly afford fuel to get to work, put food on the table, Provide shelter for there families or themselves. My question here is this. We have voted to provide for essential services. If these budgets have been mismanaged then those people must be discharged. This should be true on the state and local levels. I have a smirk when I read that a city who wants to improve a downtown enviornment by adding trees. When the city gave special treatment to a museum project that will one moretime be another Albertrose. It’s just like the leadershiips idea of promoting a Mall that created a ghost town of the street they now want to plant trees. Our leaders in this town just don’t get it. I ask anyone stand in any area of the city take a good look around. It isn’t rocket science. I will always contend that is you mismammage or misrepresent the people who place ther trust in you to lead then you must be replaced not by vote but fired and prosecuted. We who are not elected deserve integrity and accountability period.

  23. “We have voted to provide for essential services.”

    I guess I missed this election.

  24. sandblower says:

    “We have voted to provide for essential services.”
    Rationalization without representation.

  25. alindasue says:

    jellee said, “if poorer people spend ALL of their money on food, then i could understand your point. but if you were reality based…”

    My thoughts on the matter are very reality based. Currently, as result of four incomes coming into our household, we are now living at a relatively comfortable “middle class” level. However, it was not too many years ago that we definitely qualified as a low income family, free school lunches and all.

    We did buy plenty of taxable items such as cat food, kotex, toilet paper, diapers, etc. However, food was still the bulk of our shopping. It’s only in recent years, now that we have more money, that we’ve been buying items that would add up to more than a couple dollars a week in sales tax.

    As for food stamp assistance, I have long held that it would better to replace food stamps with a voucher system (similar to WIC but on a much expanded level) that would allow essential non-food items like toilet paper and diapers, but not allow non-nutritious foods like soda pop and candy bars… but that’s a discussion for another thread.

  26. LarryFine says:

    “When you are unwilling to pay, you get what you pay for.”

    Kooky, considering those that pay the least in taxes consume the most.

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