The Huckarise

The rise of Mike Huckabee from obscurity to the top of the Republican polls is nothing short of amazing.

Mike Huckabee earned 1% of Republican support in the May 12, 2007 Gallup Poll (cite for most polls in this post). This placed him solidly behind Rudy Giuliani (32%), John McCain (24%), Fred Thompson (12%), Mitt Romney (10%), and Sam Brownback (2%) and tied with Tom Tancredo, Jim Gilmore, George Pataki, and Tommy Thompson. He was an also-ran at best.

The current Rasmussen Report (based on poll data from the 4th to 7th) gives Huckabee 22% of the Republican vote, giving him a 4 point lead over second place Giuliani. He has experienced a similar rise in Iowa, where the first primary will be held January 3rd. Instead of spewing numbers I compiled a graph from this data. Note the huge uptick over the past several months:

There are several explanations to the Huckarise.

Wide Appeal

Huckabee has a wide appeal to large cross-section of the country. On August 14, our own David Remer made an insightful comment: "Watch out for Huckabee. He is the candidate that could potentially pull out from behind and appeal to both the Conservative base and a majority of the Independent voters, and if that happens, Democrats lose the White House in ‘08." This is exactly what is starting to happen.

Non-traditional marketing

Huckabee's contacts (the Huckadex?) are extensive. He has been able to use networking to his advantage to a larger extent than any other candidate. He has been able to gain the support of influential but not well known social conservatives like Randy Brinson. The December 2nd issue of the Washington Post (page A2) credited Brinson, who controls an influential list of conservative voters, with giving Huckabee a boost.

Wit

As a former minister, Huckabee is used to public speaking. Even so, his witty one liners are excellent and have served him well. His most recent quip, "Jesus was too smart to ever run for public office" has over 15,000 hits on Google.

Chuck Norris

Huckabee's rise in the polls was likely accentuated by the endorsement of action hero Chuck Norris. The pair created the most creative campaign video I have ever seen based on pop-culture myths surrounding the former "Walker Texas Ranger" star.

Other things

There are a number of other factors that are contributing to the Huckarise. This article serves to indicate only a few of the more interesting aspects. What do you think? Tell me in the comments section. If there are complaints I will address them in a future article. Bonus points for the most original Huckapun. Posted by Andrew Breza at December 7, 2007 7:02 PM
Comments
Comment #240273

Dumb question from the left: what happened to Duncan Hunter?

Honestly, he is 100% reliably conservative, both on social issues and financial issues. Not only did he serve this wonderful country himself but he has a son that’s currently serving in harms way.

WTF?

I really don’t get this. IMO the supposed “front-runners” are a conglomeration of ideologues and hypocrites.

Hell, I’d trust Duncan Hunter more than anyone else on the right, and Joe Biden more than anyone on the left.

EVERYONE else wants too much change too quickly and we could easily see ourselves plunged into a new depression that would make the 1930’s look like child’s play.

McCain and Dodd are also on the short list of candidates that don’t absolutely scare the shit out of me.

Posted by: KansasDem at December 7, 2007 10:55 PM
Comment #240276

I have to hand it to Huckabee. He may actually be genuine and he is surprisingly personable.IMO he is genuine but genuinly wrong on most issues of import. On the issues were we have agreement,and there are some he seems somewhat naive: For example,he is calling for energy independance by his second term.Great but he does not seem to understand just how much opposition he will encounter. Even so it is more than just the lip service we get now.
He also had the courage,along with McCain to show up at an AARP sponsered debate to answer questions re. SS. His plan is to offer retirerees a lump sum payment of some undisclosed amount and then tax it back away from them with a national sales tax he likes to call” Fair Tax”.With that in mind I hope you guys nominate him. He does not stand a chance of getting elected but then again niether do your other candidates and at least you will go down with a person of integrity instead of those other sleazeballs.

Posted by: BillS at December 8, 2007 12:20 AM
Comment #240282

Two items are encouraging for the Democrats if Huckabee wins the nomination. Huckabee’s stance on a National Sales Tax which would block other tax reforms with the Veto, and his insistence on eliminating the Estate Tax and reducing Other taxes on the wealthy like Capital Gains should the National Sales Tax fail. Both of these items are going to create intense opposition from Democrats and Independents who are acutely aware that tax cuts for the wealthy or regressive national sales tax would be a blow to the middle class.

With the economy and national debt being key issues in 2008, these are big liabilities for Huckabee, especially if he is running against Obama, whose polls also appear to be another upset in the making similar to Huckabee’s. Hillary is losing steam. The people are recognizing she is not the change candidate they want. That becomes a liability for Huckabee too on those issues he shares in common with GW Bush.

If, as it is beginning to appear, the 2008 Presidential election is between Obama and Huckabee, it will be too close to call until the votes are counted. Huckabee will get the White Male and conservative vote as well as the anti-one party government Independent vote, Obama will get the female and ‘we need change’ vote progressive vote, as well as the ‘we’ve had enough of Republican rule’ Independent vote. It will be a close race, indeed, with the Independent vote divided between these two candidates.

Posted by: David R. Remer at December 8, 2007 3:07 AM
Comment #240292

If Chuck Norris is endorsing Huckabee, why is he doing commercials for Thompson???

Posted by: Rachel at December 8, 2007 9:29 AM
Comment #240300
Mike Huckabee
Posted by: d.a.n at December 8, 2007 11:21 AM
Comment #240307

Isn’t this the run the flag up the pole and see if anyone salutes crowd? The Republicans aren’t going to win the WH.

Posted by: googlumpus at December 8, 2007 12:54 PM
Comment #240312

DR
MH SS solution to the supposed SS problem is its elimination through various schemes. This will not sell to AARP or most Americans that have paid so much into it.
His previous stance on AIDS also adds questions to his ability to govern. Even the most twisted and homophobic rightwingers understand that “isolating” AIDs victums would mean those at risk would avoid testing.

Posted by: BillS at December 8, 2007 1:27 PM
Comment #240313

Mike Huckabee just might be tho only candidate that can keep the Republicans in the White House. He does have the charisma to pull it off. But charisma alone just plain don’t cut it with me.
Other than being Governor of Arkansas for the last 8 to 10 years, what other qualifications does he have to be President? I think that after Clinton and Bush we’ve been shown that just because someone was once the Governor of a state that they aint necessarily qualified to be President.

googlumpus
They might not. Then again they might. Personally I hope neither major party wins the White House.

Posted by: Ron Brown at December 8, 2007 1:29 PM
Comment #240314

d.a.n
Just glanced through your link. Of the many things that I either agree or disagree in general with Huckabee on, the one thing that hit me was his saying that marriage is about a loving relationship and not a happy one.
HUH?
If the relationship is loving it’s gonna be a happy one.
In general it though looks like he has a whole heap of contradicting views. But that’s typical for 99.99% of the politicians these days.

Posted by: Ron Brown at December 8, 2007 1:44 PM
Comment #240317

The reason elections can be unpredictable is because very often their are things voters don’t like about all the candidates as they learn about them. But, then, for those who assume the responsibility of choosing, a choice is made, nonetheless. There has never been a perfect candidate, running opposed, and winning 100% of the vote.

I see many problems with Huckabee, but, the biggest is that he will likely work with a Democratic Congress and gridlock on our long term problems will murder this country’s future. We cannot afford gridlock on the entitlement issues, deficits, foreign and international policy, education, infrastructure, and trade policy. We must improve on these dramatically or we will pass milestones of no return en route to a declining economic and political future.

Posted by: David R. Remer at December 8, 2007 3:05 PM
Comment #240318

KansasDem

“EVERYONE else wants too much change too quickly and we could easily see ourselves plunged into a new depression that would make the 1930’s look like child’s play.”

doom and gloom huh.

“McCain and Dodd are also on the short list of candidates that don’t absolutely scare the shit out of me.”


mc cain is history. i liked him in 2000, but he’s changed to much since then. after his little love affair with daschle and co. back in the day conservatives don’t IMO trust him.

the democrat frontrunners are not qualified to be pres. no one seems to be paying any attention to richardson who IMO probably is the most qualified out of the whole bunch, and could actually appeal to a broader audience.


david

“Hillary is losing steam. The people are recognizing she is not the change candidate they want.”

i agree david. she represents the return of the clintons, and she’s no Bill. she made a comment though that was very telling when she said she would get as much imput as possible when making big decisions, including consulting with her husband. IMO thats a way of saying elect me, and you get Bill too. sounds like she’s trying to sell that because on her own she can’t win. not to mention she’s completely unqualified for the job.

Posted by: dbs at December 8, 2007 3:13 PM
Comment #240322
Ron Brown wrote: Just glanced through your link. Of the many things that I either agree or disagree in general with Huckabee on, the one thing that hit me was his saying that marriage is about a loving relationship and not a happy one.
Yes, that’s not worded very well
Ron Brown wrote: In general it though looks like he has a whole heap of contradicting views. But that’s typical for 99.99% of the politicians these days.
No kiddin’ !

Running for office seems to do that. And after getting elected, they get amnesia and forget all their campaign promises.

Posted by: d.a.n at December 8, 2007 3:41 PM
Comment #240323
I see many problems with Huckabee, but, the biggest is that he will likely work with a Democratic Congress and gridlock on our long term problems will murder this country’s future. We cannot afford gridlock on the entitlement issues, deficits, foreign and international policy, education, infrastructure, and trade policy. We must improve on these dramatically or we will pass milestones of no return en route to a declining economic and political future.
What does it say about Huckabee and many other Republicans, when 95% of 91 Congress persons that support the un-FairTax.org’s 30% National Sales tax are Republican? Does this confirm the belief that Republicans only carry the water for the wealthy?

Either they:

  • (1) doesn’t really understand the regressive nature of taxing spending (despite a rebate which is only untaxes the lowest tax level).

  • (2) truly understands the regressive nature of taxing spending, and likes it.

  • The unFairTax.org’s 30% National Sales Tax system will simply make the 30+ year disparty trend worse.

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 8, 2007 3:53 PM
    Comment #240325

    dbs “sounds like she’s trying to sell that because on her own she can’t win. not to mention she’s completely unqualified for the job.”

    When W was elected the bar was lowered quite a bit. Both parties seem to be relying on this. Clinton however has more experience that Guliani, Thompson, Huckabee,and Obama IMO. If its experience we want Biden would be a lot farther up the Dems pecking order.


    Posted by: j2t2 at December 8, 2007 4:04 PM
    Comment #240326

    j2t2

    “When W was elected the bar was lowered quite a bit.”

    that may be your opinion, but he was governor of one of the largest states in the union. he had actual experience governing.

    “Clinton however has more experience that Guliani,”

    i respectfully disagree. while i’m not a fan of guliani, he was mayor of one of the largest cities in the country, while this is small time compared to being governor of a state, it’s still more experience than hillary has. being first lady for 8 yrs. IMO does not qualify you to be pres., if that were the case than one could say laura bush would also be qualified, and for that matter living with a lawyer for 8 yrs, and helping occasionaly would qualify you to practice law. i just don’t see it. as far as i know biden is just a lawyer that has been a senator. he has no practical experience. IMO richardson has the best resume in the whole group, but for some reason he’s not hi profile or flashy enough.

    Posted by: dbs at December 8, 2007 4:23 PM
    Comment #240328

    dbs, isnt Clinton one of the Senators from the state that includes one of the largest cities in the country? Biden has been a Senator for years doesnt that count for experience? I think Bush proves the case that just because you can run a business and/or run a business into the ground doesnt qualify you to be a representative or leader of the people of this country. Business and political office are different beasts. Look where we are now after the past two decades of trying to run the Country as a CEO would run a business, deeper in debt and an even larger federal government. And this is by people who ran on the platform of smaller government and less taxes.

    Posted by: j2t2 at December 8, 2007 4:51 PM
    Comment #240330

    j2t2

    “isnt Clinton one of the Senators from the state that includes one of the largest cities in the country?”

    yes she is, but she is just starting her second term, and being a second term senator is far from having the needed experience.just being a legislator for a number of years is not in itself adequate experience to be pres.

    “Look where we are now after the past two decades of trying to run the Country as a CEO would run a business, deeper in debt and an even larger federal government. “

    i wouldn’t say we’ve run the country like a business, when revenue drops co.s cut thier budget, or at least those who want to stay do. you trim the fat, you don’t try to overcharge your customers. we’ve paid farmers not to grow crops, we’ve bailed out failing corporations when they should have been left to fail if the market so dictated. if gov’t would keep thier noses out of things other than making sure people aren’t being swindled, we’d be a lot better off.

    i’m not happy about the growth of gov’t over the last 16 yrs. either. i’m especially annoyed with the reps. who have obviously lost thier way, but if you think that will change with the dems, you’ll be sadly disappointed.

    Posted by: dbs at December 8, 2007 5:10 PM
    Comment #240331

    We don’t need anyone with this mindset as president…

    As a candidate for a U.S. Senate seat in 1992, Huckabee answered 229 questions submitted to him by The Associated Press. Besides a quarantine, Huckabee suggested that Hollywood celebrities fund AIDS research from their own pockets, rather than federal health agencies.

    “If the federal government is truly serious about doing something with the AIDS virus, we need to take steps that would isolate the carriers of this plague,” Huckabee wrote.

    “It is difficult to understand the public policy towards AIDS. It is the first time in the history of civilization in which the carriers of a genuine plague have not been isolated from the general population, and in which this deadly disease for which there is no cure is being treated as a civil rights issue instead of the true health crisis it represents.”

    Posted by: Rachel at December 8, 2007 5:12 PM
    Comment #240332
    “When W was elected the bar was lowered quite a bit.”

    that may be your opinion, but he was governor of one of the largest states in the union. he had actual experience governing.

    Not to alienate Texans, but “big” doesn’t necessitate “well run”…look at the number of executions, the education system, the poverty, etc. … Texas doesn’t rank 1st in anything positive except size! Just being another “good ole boy” doesn’t mean there’s anything between the ears.

    Posted by: Rachel at December 8, 2007 5:15 PM
    Comment #240337

    Rachel

    what does any of that have to do with having experience as a governor? and being a former first lady doesn’t mean there is anything between the ears either.

    if you want to look at a state thats not well run just look at the wonderful state i live in, the once great state of california. it’s nothing more now than a liberal socialist experiment gone bad.

    Posted by: dbs at December 8, 2007 6:28 PM
    Comment #240339

    dbs said: being first lady for 8 yrs. IMO does not qualify you to be pres.

    Neither does being Mayor of a large city or Governor of a state.
    Bill Clinton and George Bush have proven that Governors aint always qualified to be President.

    Posted by: Ron Brown at December 8, 2007 7:31 PM
    Comment #240351

    Rachel,
    Now you have to read more of the surrounding text then that. Yes they should be isolated, as in, they should stop having sex and spreading it. They should be identified so they cannot donate blood, so when ems arrives with a bloody patient that they will take extra precautions to prevent themselves from getting AIDS.

    AIDs is a serious issue, and it deserves to be treated like one. Civil liberties are very important, but there are times when the protectors of civil liberties have gotten more people killed then saved. And this would be one more I hope Civil Liberties orgs. do not add to the list if they have not already.

    I do not however think people with AIDS should be sent off anywhere or be quarantined in the tradiational sence unless they choose to violate the public health or some strange mutation occurs that makes it airborn.

    But going back to the orginal article, I have been watching Huckabee for a while, and I have to say I like his wit, charm, and public personality. I agree with most of his beliefs on what should be changed or remain the same. I do believe it is time for the tax code to be changed, I personally think how the income tax is now is illegal. Even though I’m happy with only paying around 700 dollars after all my deductions and credits for making over 30,000. I’m not sure if the Fair Tax is the way to go or not.

    The only people I even think about on the republican side are Ron, and Mike. On the D’s side it is Richardson.

    Posted by: Kujo at December 9, 2007 12:25 AM
    Comment #240360

    link of Mike and Aids that Rachel might have been referencing to. This is why I believe it is important that people take the time to do more research on important subjects and get all the information. The quotes are from 1992, and although it might have been common knowledge that AIDs does not spread by casual contact, that can be debated. I still remember when I was in middle school 10 years ago, and the teacher saying many people still think AIDs could be contacted by touch, or other ways that we know today are not true. The problem is a lot of people still didn’t know, because people didn’t want to talk about it that much. They still don’t today unless if it is AIDs awareness, IMO.

    Posted by: Kujo at December 9, 2007 5:26 AM
    Comment #240363

    Kujo:…your link only leads to a page where one might purchase a domain name…hardly the article to which I was referring…

    The general public was even more informed in 1992 than Huckabee was about AIDS and its transmission…one would hope he’s seen the light, but somehow I doubt it…why doesn’t someone ask him about his attitude toward AIDS patients instead of those softball “debate” questions…

    Maybe we should quarantine presidential candidates instead lest they spread their uninformed ideas to the general public.

    Posted by: Rachel at December 9, 2007 9:09 AM
    Comment #240365

    As far as W being the Gov. of a large state, somebody from Tejas back me up on this but Gov. is somewhere around the sixth most powerful position in the state, no? The Texas Legislature or some silly committee of Good Ole Boys or something like that lets a small fry (W) think he’s somebody and let him think he actually has a voice. Truer words were never spoken then when someone said the bar has never been lower.

    Posted by: Ray at December 9, 2007 10:01 AM
    Comment #240383

    “Huckabee stands by AIDS statement”

    http://tinyurl.com/32eq8w

    “I still believe this today,” he said in a broadcast interview, that “we were acting more out of political correctness” in responding to the AIDS crisis. “I don’t run from it, I don’t recant it,” he said of his position in 1992.

    So, in my humble view, yep the GOP has found it’s knight in shining armor. Maybe we can finally put those new “detention centers” to good use as reeducation and repentance centers for those who have chosen “an aberrant, unnatural, and sinful lifestyle.”

    NOTE THE QUOTATION MARKS! Those are Hucksters words, not mine!

    Give the man two gold stars: one for recognizing homosexuality for what all good Christian’s know it is, and the second for being able to reject science without blinking twice.

    He may even get the Westboro Baptist endorsement.

    Posted by: KansasDem at December 9, 2007 2:21 PM
    Comment #240392

    Ray, quite correct about the Governor of Texas. It is the Lt. Gov. who has considerably administrative power in Texas than the Governor. Tex. has a unique and dysfunctional Constitution, unlike any other in the Union. You need a Constitutional Amendment to issue bonds for public works, for example. Doesn’t stop Texans from issuing bonds, however. Our Constitution with all of its Amendments is something like 10 feet high now printed front and back.

    No one in Texas knows what all is in it anymore. The Legislature is in some ways more powerful than any other in the Union, as well, and thanks to some of the most nefarious gerrymandering (ala Tom DeLay and others), one of the most politically rigged states in the Union as well.

    Still, Texas has no property valuation tax on personal property nor a state income tax, though the current government continues to toy with the idea. And of course no sales tax on food. These are things that would be lost if Texas ever tried to update its Constitution to even the 20th century norms, let alone 21st.

    Hence, the incredibly costly and unworkable Texas Constitution remains the artifact of a bygone day when common folk believed they could create a state without the assistance, aid, or benefit of the U.S. Constitution or any other State as a model. Many important Texans at the time never wanted to become one of the United States in the first place. And it shows in the Texas Constitution.

    Just to give a comparison, the entire United States Constitution ascii file is 42K in size. The Texas Constitution ascii file (After stripping out the necessary index) is 570K in size, and growing. That’s 13.5 times larger to run one state. Needless to say, no governor of Texas is expected to know the contents of the Texas Constitution. Which may explain why GW Bush paid no attention to the U.S. Constitution as President.

    Posted by: David R. Remer at December 9, 2007 4:09 PM
    Comment #240397

    Just for the record, NumbersUSA rates Tancredo and Hunter as the two candidates whose past voting records on illegal immigration match their campaign rhetoric and promises to halt it. Huckabee’s campaign promises receive good marks, but, his voting history on the record is rated as a big red “BAD”.

    Huckabee is shuckabeeing the public into believing he has integrity on the issues, when his record seems to contradict his campaign pledges on several issues. Huckabee says we should lower taxes but, as governor he raised the total taxes on citizens after deducting the many cuts from the raises.

    In other words, Huckabee made it appear he was reducing taxes by signing a number of small tax cuts while signing only a few tax increases. But, the few tax increases were more than all the tax cuts in dollar amounts, resulting in net tax increases for Arkansas citizens. Clever guy.

    Posted by: David R. Remer at December 9, 2007 4:23 PM
    Comment #240401

    I am equally amazed at Huckabee’s rise in the polls. It is nothing short of amazing, but I believe that it shows that the Republican race is wide-open and not everyone is happy with Rudy Giuliani as the frontrunner. I suspect that his honeymoon will be shortlived as various bits of information regarding his record on different issues will be revealed. We have seen it as early as today when information was released about his position in 1992 to isolate AIDS victims and has said that homosexuality is an aberration. While he can explain away his positions, I am not sure that his explanations will stick. http://blackpoliticalthought.blogspot.com

    Posted by: Janet at December 9, 2007 5:08 PM
    Comment #240408

    Personally I want to see Duncan Hunter do well in the polls.

    On the other hand Huckabee’s responses to the stories rolled out as a result of opposition research (He did run against, and beat, the Clinton machine in Arkasas three times, so there is lots of opposition research on him.) has been impressive. He is steady, measured, and unflustered. He sells himself well.

    By the way the Fair Tax is something I heartily support because implementing it would get rid of the IRS and millions of ancillary vultures this economy must support for accomplishing nothing that puts food on tables, fuel in tanks, clothes on our backs, or roofs over our heads.

    Posted by: Lee Jamison at December 9, 2007 7:51 PM
    Comment #240413

    “Tancredo and Hunter as the two candidates whose past voting records on illegal immigration match their campaign rhetoric and promises to halt it.”

    David R. Remer,

    This is what blows my mind. Of course Tancredo is viewed as somewhat of a nut-job, but Hunter is tried and true on conservative issues from abortion to fiscal responsibility.

    I can’t help but think our system is broken because idiots get to vote. And they’re willful idiots to-boot!

    We (as a whole) get what we deserve! And I don’t know how to change that.

    Posted by: KansasDem at December 9, 2007 9:10 PM
    Comment #240415

    “By the way the Fair Tax is something I heartily support because implementing it would get rid of the IRS”

    Lee,

    IMHO all that would happen is the IRS would assume a role much more like BATF. We’d see tax enforcement cops left and right fighting “black markets”.

    I’ve also wondered how that would play out with our multi-millionaire upper 0.5%. Say you decide to spend most of those millions in Europe? You want a yacht built? Have it done somewhere other than here ………. you save a cool 17 to 23%.

    Should Paris Hilton need a tit job somewhere down the road …………… get-r-dun in France!

    If your kid needs braces ………. well, not so good ………. you suddenly have to pay MORE! 17 to 23% MORE!

    As a “father of the bride” twice where do you think I’d buy those wedding dresses?

    The whole damn idea is ludicrous!

    David R. Remer has done an excellent job of painting this BS for what it is ………… just another shift of taxation onto the working class.


    But, the pendulum will swing, and when it does………….

    Posted by: KansasDem at December 9, 2007 9:28 PM
    Comment #240417

    Sorry, there is the full link you can copy and paste, not sure why it didn’t work when I did it at first.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071209/ap_po/huckabee;_ylt=AuD96153firgWjnLWwfqMc1p24cA

    yahoo link

    Posted by: kujo at December 9, 2007 9:56 PM
    Comment #240434

    Increasingly, Mike Huckabee is what leadership looks like. He’s an adroit public speaker, and he communicates his message in life-like, cogent terms, with compelling examples like the story he told (at the Ames Straw Poll) of what his then-11-yo daughter entered into the “Comments” section of a Visitors Book after visiting the Yad Vashem holocaust museum: “Why didn’t somebody do something?” Very effective.

    Huckabee is all about calling his listeners to “do something,” to awaken them to their own empowerment, and summon them to action in order that “Main Street,” and not “Wall Street,” will prevail in guarding the values and beliefs upon which the Republic was founded.

    Huckabee puts his listeners at ease, and reassures them, articulating clear concepts in a natural, easy style (no doubt something well-cultivated as a pastor). He’s not as “mechanically-scripted” as Romney, nor angry or demanding, like a Ron Paul, and his large brown eyes, peering through a humble demeanor, draw a striking contrast to a unconvincing, tired-looking Thompson. One can easily imagine sitting comfortably with Mike over a cup of coffee at the Main Street Cafe.

    Most importantly, perhaps, Huckabee is ONE with the FairTax grassroots movement. While many - like Romney, and others, who are invested in the current income tax system - seek to demagog the well-researched FairTax plan, its acceptance in the professional / academic community continues to grow. Renown economist Laurence Kotlikoff believes that failure to enact the FairTax - choosing instead to try to “flatten” what he deems to be a non-flattenable income tax system - will eventuate into an irrevocable economic meltdown because of the hidden aspects of the current system that make political accountability impossible.

    Romney’s recent WEAK response to FairTax questioning on “This Week with Geo. Stephanopoulos” drew a sharper contrast between Huckabee and all other presidential front-runners who will not embrace it. Huckabee understands that what’s wrong with the income tax can’t be fixed with “a tap of the hammer, nor a twist of the screwdriver.” That his opponents cling to the destructive Tax Code, the IRS, preserving political power of granting tax favors at continued cost to - and misery of - American families, invigorates his campaign’s raison d’etre.

    Of the FairTax, Huckabee asserts that it’s…

    • SIMPLE, easy to understand
    • EFFICIENT, inexpensive to comply with and doesn’t cause less-than-optimal business decisions for tax minimization purposes
    • FAIR, FLAT, and FAMILY FRIENDLY, loophole-free, and everyone pays their share
    • LOW TAX RATE is achieved by broad base with no exclusions
    • PREDICTABLE, doesn’t change, so financial planning is possible
    • UNINTRUSIVE, doesn’t intrude into our personal affairs or limit our liberty
    • VISIBLE, not hidden from the public in tax-inflated prices or otherwise
    • PRODUCTIVE, rewards - rather than penalizes - work and productivity

    A detailed benefits analysis of the plan (from The FairTax Book) explains Huckabee’s ardent advocacy:

    For individuals:
    • No more tax on income - make as much as you wish
    • You receive your full paycheck - no more deductions
    • You pay the tax when you buy “at retail” - not “used”
    • No more double taxation (e.g. like on current Capital Gains)
    • Reduction of “pre-FairTaxed” retail prices (due to reduced costs; increased competition)
    • 29.9% mark-up yields 23% FairTax portion of prices
    • Over the first year, “market-adjusted” FairTax prices comparable to current
    • Every household receives a monthly check, or “prebate”
    • “Prebate” is “advance tax payback” for monthly consumption to poverty level
    • FairTax’s “prebate” ensures progressivity, poverty protection
    Finally, citizens are knowledgeable of what their tax IS
    • Elimination of “parasitic” Income Tax industry
    • NO MORE IRS. NO MORE FILING OF TAX RETURNS by individuals
    • Those possessing illicit forms of income will ALSO pay the FairTax
    • Households have more disposable income to purchase goods
    • Savings is bolstered with reduction of interest rates

    For businesses:
    • Corporate income and payroll taxes revoked under FairTax
    • Business compensated for collecting tax at “cash register”
    • No more tax-related lawyers, lobbyists on company payrolls
    No more embedded (hidden) income/payroll taxes in prices
    • Reduced costs. Competition - not tax policy - drives prices
    • Off-shore “tax haven” headquarters can now return to U.S
    No more “favors” from politicians at expense of taxpayers
    • Resources go to R&D and study of competition - not taxes
    • Global “free (and equitable) trade” becomes possible for currently-disadvanted U.S. exports
    • U.S. exports increase their share of foreign markets

    For the country:
    • 7% - 13% economic growth projected in the first year of the FairTax
    Jobs return to the U.S.
    • Foreign corporations “set up shop” in the U.S.
    • Tax system trends are corrected to “enlarge the pie”
    • Larger economic “pie,” means thinner tax rate “slices”
    • Initial 23% portion of price is pressured downward as “pie” increases
    No more “closed door” tax deals by politicians and business
    • FairTax sets new global standard. Other countries will follow

    Passionately supporting FairTax, Huckabee understands that, if elected President, Congress will have to present the bill for his signature. His call to action goes beyond his candidacy: Main Street will have to demand that their legislators deliver the bill.

    (Permission is granted to reproduce, in whole or part. - Ian)

    Posted by: Ian at December 10, 2007 3:10 AM
    Comment #240435

    Libs don’t like the FairTax plan because it would essentially do away with K Street lobbiests and thus hamper their agenda to “soak the rich.” and redistribute the wealth. After all, You don’t own your money. The government owns all the money and will let you use it as long as you spend it the way they want you to.

    Posted by: tomd at December 10, 2007 3:25 AM
    Comment #240441

    KansasDem,

    You have heard of “customs” haven’t you? As a matter of fact customs is where the Federal goverment used to get virtually all its income before before the 16th amendment and the institution of the American gestapo. If you’re worried about people buying overseas simply have customs charges for bringing goods into the country.

    However, one of your assumptions is simply wrong. Since Europe uses value added taxes embedded in the price of goods the initial price of the goods from overseas would be substatially higher than the untaxed prices of market goods in the U.S. The truth is that if America goes to a system that eliminates the hidden taxes which burden our producers we will also become far more competitive in those foreign markets. Our taxation burden on goods going to foreign markets (the combination of federal, state, and local taxes) is higher than that of most of our market competitors.

    Furthermore, the present system is dishonest, allowing politicians to rail at the “greedy” businesses that provide the things we need even as much of the cost we think we are paying the greedy bastards is actually hidden taxes paid to buy our votes with our own money, while at the same time much of our tax burden goes essentially unfelt because people never see the money siphoned off of their paychecks. The Fair Tax would mean that people would see the money government costs them- a crucial step in the elimination of the bald corruption now rampant in the federal government.

    Posted by: Lee Jamison at December 10, 2007 9:31 AM
    Comment #240450

    Huckabee and many other Republicans (86 of 91 Congress persons) support this regressive un-FairTax.org 30% National Sales Tax.

    Unfortunately, there are few (if any) candidates that want to do the most simple and fair thing immediately, which would not require a vast change, but would make tax calculations VERY simple, and approach a NEUTRAL (neither REGRESSIVE or PROGRESSIVE) 17% as income increases.

    The Democrats want to raise taxes.
    The Republicans want to reduce taxes.
    Few (if any) want to simply make it simple and fair.

    The un-FairTax.org 30% National Sales Tax is not a fair tax system.
    They spew tons and tons of articles, tables, and crap to try to prove that taxing spending is fair, but there is no way to prove that taxing spending is fair.
    Find any other sales tax and try to prove that it isn’t regressive.
    Now try it with a massive 30% National Sales tax.
    QUESTION: And WHY does it have to be such a large percentage.
    ANSWER: Because the tax is REGRESSIVE, and the percentage must be large to bilk the middle-income group as much as possible.

    Are you really sure you understand it (see simple table below using un-FairTax.org’s own data)?
    Are you really sure you know WHO will love it most?
    And WHY?
    If you like REGRESSIVE tax-on-spending tax systems, you will love the un-FairTax.org’s 30% National Sales Tax.
    The un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax system (with a prebate system that will be a nightmare full of fraud; with about $2400 for a single person and $5902 for a family of four) is ONLY progressive at the low-income region of the tax curve. The full tax curve is essentially a bump (i.e. top half of a semi-circle). Who do you think will end up paying the highest percentages of their income to taxes?

    True, the current tax system is regressive too due to a myriad of complex tax loop-holes.

    There’s a better way. Simplify the current system with a flat 17% ONLY on income above the poverty level, and eliminate corporate income taxes which are merely hidden and regressive taxes that are passed on to consumers (domestic and foreigh). That makes things MUCH more simple and fair. After all, Warren Buffet (in Year 2006) paid a 17.7% income tax rate on 46 million. His secretary paid a 30% income tax rate on $60K. Why can we all pay a flat 17% (like Warren Buffet), but only on income above the poverty level? Get rid of all the tax loop holes and huge tax rates (some as high as 90%) on inheritance?

    The problem with taxing spending is that is regressive (not just in theory, but in practice), unless the prebates are huge, or everyone spends an equal percentage of their income. The tax curve is regressive. Is regressive taxation fair?

    Here’s part of the FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax fraud … (see: www.fairtax.org/PDF/WhatIsTheDifferenceBetweenTaxRates.pdf) Page 4 of FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax example.

    Notice that their table omits income. Why is that? That’s because they don’t want you looking at tax relative to income.

    POPL = Percent of Poverty Level ($25,660 for family of 4)
    Eff.Tax = Effective Tax

    POPL _ Spending __FairTax___Prebate _NetTax_____Eff.Tax
    25% ___ $6415 ____ $1,475 __ $5,902 _ ($4,427) _ -69.0%
    50% ___ $12,830 __ $2,951 __ $5,902 _ ($2,951) _ -23.0%
    100% __ $25,660 __ $5,902 __ $5,902 _______ $0 ___ 0.0%
    150% __ $38,490 __ $8,853 __ $5,902 ___ $2,951 ___ 7.7%
    200% __ $51,320 __ $11,804 _ $5,902 ___ $5,902 __ 11.5%
    300% __ $76,980 __ $17,705 _ $5,902 __ $11,903 __ 15.3%
    400% __ $102,640 _ $23,607 _ $5,902 __ $17,705 __ 17.2%

    Now, let’s add the Income and IncomeTaxRate columns (what the FairTax.org 30% Sales Tax proponents don’t want you to see)

    POPL _ Spending __FairTax___Prebate _NetTax_____Eff.Tax _ Income __IncomeTaxRate
    25% ___ $6415 ____ $1,475 __ $5,902 _ ($4,427) _ -69.0% _ $8,000 __ -49.7%
    50% ___ $12,830 __ $2,951 __ $5,902 _ ($2,951) _ -23.0% _ $15,000 _ -13.7%
    100% __ $25,660 __ $5,902 __ $5,902 _______ $0 ___ 0.0% _ $27,000 __ 6.65%
    150% __ $38,490 __ $8,853 __ $5,902 ___ $2,951 ___ 7.7% _ $40,000 _ 14.11%
    200% __ $51,320 __ $11,804 _ $5,902 ___ $5,902 __ 11.5% _ $53,000 _ 17.91%
    300% __ $76,980 __ $17,705 _ $5,902 __ $11,903 __ 15.3% _ $200,000 _ 8.60%
    400% __ $102,640 _ $23,607 _ $5,902 __ $17,705 __ 17.2% _ $500,000 _ 4.98%

    30%
    27% _
    24% _ _ _
    21% _ _ _ _ _
    18% _ _ _ _ _X_ _
    15% _ _X _ _ _ _ _X
    12% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ X
    09% _X _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    06% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    03% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    00% X_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    __$0K $30K 50K 100K __ 200K __ 300K __ 400K __ 500K __ … INCOME

    It’s very clever.
    However, the FairTax.org’s 30% Tax System can NOT prove that tax rates relative to income will be somewhat equal. Not when taxes are based on spending. The rebate only makes the lowest part of the curve progressive. After the prebate runs out (i.e. becomes insignificant as income rises), it is essentially nothing more than a flat 30% Sales Tax, and all flat sales taxes are regressive unless everyone spends an equal percentage of their income.

    However, if the people fall for a 30% National Sales tax, it will be just one more of many regressive systems that have been foisted upon them in the past 30 years that will accelerate the current and worsening disparity trend. Anyone that thinks taxing spending is the fairest way to tax had better ask themselves two questions:

    • WHO is pushing the un-FairTax.org’s 30 National Sales Tax? WHO is throwing a lot of money and lobbyists at this tax 30% National Sales tax system.

    • (2)And WHY ?
    People had better take a look at the math (see table above). There is NO way to prove that taxing spending will not be REGRESSIVE. Historically, taxing spending is always regressive, and the puny rebate is insignificant, except at the lowest income level. The claims that the rebate makes the 30% Sales Tax system progressive is barely a half-truth. People can get their education the smart way, or the hard way. Don’t fall for yet another regressive system.

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 10, 2007 11:15 AM
    Comment #240453

    Dan,

    As you well know, the FairTax plan is based on consumption and not income. The whole idea is to get away from an income base of taxation in favor of a consumption based tax. Trying to use a percentage of income as a basis is wrong and I think you know it.

    A more honest way to compare it is with your own taxes. I challange anyone to compare what their taxes are now with what they would be under the FairTax plan. That would be a true comparison. Anyone can go to FairTax.org and get the formulas.

    I suspect you don’t like the FairTax because it would ruin your agenda of playing Robin Hood.

    Posted by: tomd at December 10, 2007 11:46 AM
    Comment #240458

    Lee said : “Our taxation burden on goods going to foreign markets (the combination of federal, state, and local taxes) is higher than that of most of our market competitors.”

    Man, is your comment misinformed. Check Wall Street news currently, and you will learn that exports are what are holding American corporation profitability up despite a slowing domestic consumption, credit and liquidity crunch, and historically low dollar valuation. There is no arguing with profits, and the profits demonstrate your comment is abjectly wrong on its face.

    If, and its highly debatable, corporate taxation must drop, the flat income tax completely eliminates corporate taxes as well, and far, far more fairly than the UnFair national Sales Tax. Everyone save those below 1.5 times poverty, pays the same flat rate of tax on their income. It just doesn’t get any fairer than that. The so called “FAIR” tax, puts an extremely higher percentage of income tax on the less well off, than the very well off. It is a sales tax, but the middle class will pay a far higher percentage of their income on un”Fair” sales taxes than the more well off, and the above poverty lower middle class, will pay the highest percentage of their income in consumption taxes of all. It is not a FAIR tax at all. And it will guarantee Huckabee does not win the White House, thank goodness.

    Posted by: David R. Remer at December 10, 2007 12:31 PM
    Comment #240461
    tomd wrote: d.a.n, As you well know, the FairTax plan is based on consumption and not income.
    I know, and I disagree with it completely, because the un-FairTax.org’s 30% National Sales Tax will be REGRESSIVE. All sales taxes are REGRESSIVE unless everyone spends an equal percentage of their income. The puny prebates will not eliminate the REGRESSIVE nature of and tax system that taxes spending, unless the prebates are huge (which they are not).

    If you think it’s a fair system, that’s your choice.
    I don’t, because I do not think REGRESSIVE taxation is FAIR taxation, and there is nothing fair about the un-FairTaxc.org’s massive 30% National Sales tax.

    tomd wrote: The whole idea is to get away from an income base of taxation in favor of a consumption based tax.
    I know it is, and I disagree with it, because, after the prebate runs out it is nothing more than a REGRESSIVE and massive 30% Sales Tax.
    tomd wrote: Trying to use a percentage of income as a basis is wrong and I think you know it.
    No, what is wrong is trying to push for a system that is more REGRESSIVE than the one we already have (due to a myriad of tax loop holes).
    tomd wrote: A more honest way to compare it is with your own taxes.
    More honest? Right. Like calling a 30% Sales Tax a 23% tax. That’s really honest, eh?
    tomd wrote: I challange anyone to compare what their taxes are now with what they would be under the FairTax plan.
    I did that (see above). It’s not hard at all to reveal the fraud of the un-FairTax.org 30% National Sales Tax.

    See the tables above. Funny how the un-FairTax.org 30% Sales Tax proponents are constantly trying to portray it as PROGRESSIVE with respenct to income, but then omit income columns in their calculations.

    tomd wrote: That would be a true comparison. Anyone can go to FairTax.org and get the formulas.
    Formulas? How hard is it to calculate 30% of the sale price? That’s another thing that is misleading (if not a fraud). The sales tax on a $100 item is $30. That’s a 30% Sales Tax. The 23% tax is clever, but deceptive. The 23% is calculated as 23% = $30/($100 + $30). That fools a lot of people, and think the tax on $100 would only be $23. It’s not. The tax on the $100 item is %30 ($30 = $100 x 0.30 = 30%).
    tomd wrote: I suspect you don’t like the FairTax because it would ruin your agenda of playing Robin Hood.
    Nonsense.

    I’ve advocated a Flat 17% income tax above on all personal income above the poverty level, elimination of corporate income taxes, and elimination of all tax loop holes. How is that unfair? Are you saying an equal percentage is not fair? Obviously so if you support the REGRESSIVE un-FairTax.org 30% Sales Tax.

    How is everyone paying an EQUAL percentage on income above the poverty level playing Robin Hood? Thus your comment has no credibility.

    I’ve, and others, for years, have proposed a more fair system that approaches a NUETRAL 17% as income increases. Again, it’s funny how the un-FairTax.org supporters go to great lengths to try to prove how PROGRESSIVE (relative to income) and fair a massive 30% National Sales tax would be, but then say it’s not supposed to be based on income. That fact is, all sales taxes are REGRESSIVE, and a massive 30% Sales Tax would be very REGRESSIVE.

    Fortunately, only 91 (of 535; two are former Congress persons), less than 17% in Congress, support this ridiculous un-FairTax.org 30% National Sales tax, and hope Hucksterbee keeps promoting it (proving that he promotes and advocates another unfair, REGRESSIVE system).

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 10, 2007 1:36 PM
    Comment #240463

    David,

    The phenomenon you note in current markets is a product of the free-fall in dollar valuation on international markets. A Houston Chronicle story yesterday that international visitors to the area have recently not only started to buy products in Houston stores, they’ve even begun to purchase homes in the area for their visits.

    A spiraling dollar has other effects, however, which are troubling, such as enormously increasing fuel costs and the temptation to invest in commodities such as gold which do nothing toward increasing the availability of capital in business markets. It’s so bad that, for the first time in my memory, the Canadian Dollar is worth more than the American version!

    Posted by: Lee Jamison at December 10, 2007 2:11 PM
    Comment #240469

    Lee, but you are ignoring the fact that the your so called ‘higher taxation’ on American firms IS NOT hurting their profitability. If they are profitable, what’s the beef with the taxes? VAT is a form of corporate tax as well, and doesn’t seem to be hurting the firms of European nation’s implementing it.

    Your comment I previously quoted implied our taxation is hurting American corporations, but, their dividends, and ROI’s and profits do not bear your implication out. Or is your standard unlimited profitability even beyond historical record setting for many firms?

    Some firms are going to see a downturn in profitability over the next 6 months or so, but, it is not going to be a result of taxation, but, of lower US Consumerism, the credit and liquidity crunches from the sub-prime mortgage industry spill over, etc.

    Posted by: David R. Remer at December 10, 2007 3:54 PM
    Comment #240471

    Lee,

    How would “customs” apply to the purchase of a high-rise in Dubai, or a French villa? How about your own private island? And all with non-taxed American income.

    Posted by: KansasDem at December 10, 2007 4:37 PM
    Comment #240483

    By all means,run Huckabee.When the American people find out he plans on getting rid of Social Security and the morgage tax credit even Kucinich will have a better chance of getting elected.

    Posted by: BillS at December 10, 2007 7:34 PM
    Comment #240510

    David,

    The current taxation regime hurts the entire economy by creating a sub-economy of people who do nothing useful. All they accomplish is defending us from the government. That is an opportunity cost burdening every one of us because when we feed a lawyer or an accountant to protect us from the IRS they produce nothing of real economic value in return. It is as though every family were being forced to share in housing, feeding, and clothing a college educated freeloader (as opposed to the usual batch of government imposed freeloaders like mohair producers, ethanol distillers, and the entire city of Washington, D.C.).

    Nor does the bureaucracy at the IRS accomplish any useful purpose, because the taxes they collect could be collected far more efficiently by a sales tax process using far fewer people and less draconian methods.

    This burden of governmental excess goes to the very heart of why so many jobs are lost to manufacturers overseas. Virtually every study I have seen of the relative productivity of workers around the world shows American workers are more productive than our competitors, but when the combined burdens of taxation, environmental and workplace compliance, and tort precautions were factored into the manufacturing cost of U.S. manufacturers it was still far cheaper to produce goods overseas and ship them here.

    You can SAY businesses are profitable, but it is as though government were conspiring to make that profitability accrue only to the people at the top. Oh, gee, could that be liberals accusing conservatives of doing what liberal policies actually accomplish?

    KansasDem,

    So, what part of reducing the trade imbalance do you not like? This is, by the way, one of the arguments for the Fair Tax. It would attract capital to American industries from overseas investment markets.

    Posted by: Lee Jamison at December 11, 2007 10:37 AM
    Comment #240523

    Lee said: “The current taxation regime hurts the entire economy by creating a sub-economy of people who do nothing useful. “

    You mean like Social Security recipients, or Medicare recipients? You do realize they paid for the benefits with tax dollars, right?

    The very fact that America has attorneys permitted to protect citizens from their government is a hallmark and distinguishing feature that sets our system apart from that of other nations like Russia or Russia or Cuba. All governments are powerful. Not all governments allow its citizens to contest government use of that power.

    Have you ever really needed a lawyer? Doesn’t sound like it from your comment. If you ever do, however, it would be hypocritical to hire one and keep this notion that they do nothing useful.

    Regressive National Sales would simply take the money as a condition of living. You need to repair your car to keep your job to buy food and pay rent, you pay the sales tax. Or die if you wish as a non-consumer.

    Flat Income Tax at least is less regressive, and would eliminate corporate and trade taxation on consumption. As it would be perceived as fairer, everyone pays the same rate, tax lawyers would be in less demand.

    Our current progressive tax system is not perceived as fair by many of all income strata. Thus giving rise to all manner of activity to influence government to alter the tax rate for members of all income groups from the wealthiest to the poorest.

    The Flat Income Tax is my choice. It achieves much of what you seek in terms of eliminating taxation of trade and commerce yielding competitive advantage with some other nation’s producers, with the added benefit of eliminating the perception that others are paying higher or lower rate than oneself, either by bracket or exemptions.

    Lee said: “Nor does the bureaucracy at the IRS accomplish any useful purpose, because the taxes they collect could be collected far more efficiently by a sales tax process using far fewer people and less draconian methods.”

    I don’t think you have thought this one through or researched it well. We have a 1 trillion dollar underground economy which escapes state sales taxes and income taxes and franchise taxes. A national sales will not exist with incentives to dodge the sales taxes via blackmarkets. There is ample evidence to project that a national sales tax would in fact, widen and deepen our underground economy enormously.

    You only need to look at Mitt Romney’s landscaping help to see how such illegal circumvention of the sales tax would arise. The man is running for President and partakes of an underground labor market that lowers Mitt’s costs via illegal foreign labor which deprives Americans of jobs. And he is insulated from his participation by his claim he does not hire the contractors workers, he simply hires the contractor, and still gets to run for President.

    Your entire argument that a national sales tax would not require a bureaucratic enforcement and investigation agency is preposterous and naive. In Texas, there is no sales tax on Food Stamps. Hence, Texas has an underground market for all manner of non-food goods and services using food stamps.

    Posted by: David R. Remer at December 11, 2007 12:37 PM
    Comment #240524

    Lee said: “You can SAY businesses are profitable”

    Yes, I can. Because the empirical data demonstrate that statement to be verifiably true.

    Posted by: David R. Remer at December 11, 2007 12:39 PM
    Comment #240529

    David, do you imagine there is no “underground economy” avoiding income taxes? Are you not aware of recent estimates of losses of tax revenue from various tax cheating schemes? It took me all of thirty seconds to find this quote-

    How big is the problem, and what is its nature?

    Assets held offshore, beyond the reach of effective taxation, are equal to about a third of total global assets. Over half of all world trade passes through tax havens. Developing countries lose revenues far greater than annual aid flows. We estimate that the amount of funds held offshore by individuals is about $11.5 trillion – with a resulting annual loss of tax revenue on the income from these assets of about 250 billion dollars. This is five times what the World Bank estimated in 2002 was needed to address the UN Millenium Development Goal of halving world poverty by 2015. This much money could also pay to transform the world’s energy infrastructure to tackle climate change.

    Elsewhere one may see that such amounts may run to over a third of the possible tax revenues of the federal government!

    As to the “argument” about lawyers being good for us, sure the availability of lawyers is not a bad thing. The creation of an unneccesary surfeit of lawyers, accountants and the like whose only purpose is to protect us from the ARTIFICE of a threat from government that need not exist, on the other hand, is an abomination in a free society. Because the threat need not exist these people are no better than leaches on society.

    I have used the services of lawyers who were performing legitimate functions. I admire the profession and the service it provides to a people who desire to be free, but it is wrong to create jobs for lawyers to do just so they will have something to do when the economy could better use their good minds to accomplish other things.


    As to regression the Flat Tax includes offsets to essentially pay for the taxes of the poor.
    By far the greatest advantage of this tax revision is simplicity and the elimination of the onerous burdens created not only by the tax code, but the threat of future changes in the tax code. The Income Tax was sold with lies (“never more than the top 1% to be taxed”) and it has been sustained with lies ever since. It is one long, cruel hoax only Marx or a power-mad congressman could love.

    Killing the income tax and its tax gestapo would make this country an infinitely better place.

    Posted by: Lee Jamison at December 11, 2007 1:41 PM
    Comment #240530

    Woops, the quote includes the paragraph below the part in italics.

    Posted by: Lee Jamison at December 11, 2007 1:42 PM
    Comment #240583
    As to regression the Flat Tax includes offsets to essentially pay for the taxes of the poor.
    Sure, the prebates help the poor, but what about after that?

    This is where the fraud lies.
    The un-FairTax.org proponents all say that same sort of nonsense, but they don’t want to discuss what happens after that (after the prebates become essentially insignificant).
    The fraud of this clever un-FairTax.org’s 30% National Sales Tax system (with prebates) is that it is progressive only at the lowest income levels, but then becomes severely regressive after that, and hammers the middle income levels. That is, the tax curve is essentially the top half of a circle, and the middle income levels get hammered.

    Have you really researched it thoroughly?
    Ask yourself, WHO will love this regressive 30% Sales Tax system?
    And WHY ?
    Fortunately, I think enough Americans are smart enough to recognize the fraud of the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax (with prebate) system.

    First of all, the puny prebates ($2400 for a single person, and $5902 for a family of four) in the un-FairTax.org’s 30% National Sales Tax system is only significant at the lowest end of the income spectrum. That is the reason for the strange hump in the tax curve. A $5902 prebate to a person making over $100K is only 5.902% of their gross income, and for a person making $1 million is only 0.5902% of a their gross income. Taxing spending is regressive, and claiming the prebates will remove the regressive nature of a 30% National Sales tax is pure stupidity. Fortunately, less than 17% of Congress is that stupid (and/or crooked).

    Killing the income tax and its tax gestapo would make this country an infinitely better place.
    And replacing it with an un-FairTax.org’s 30% Nationsl Sales tax is better?

    Sure, if you are rich, in which regressive taxes (and other regressive systems) are wonderful.

    The current tax system is regressive too.
    Just ask Warren Buffet who paid 17.7% income tax on $46 million in year 2006, and his secretary who paid 30% on a $60,000 salary.

    So you want a 30% National Sales Tax ?
    Can you say: “BLACK MARKET” ?

    How about this. Simplify the current tax system:

    • (1)Make it a flat 17% only on income above the poverty level (no ridiculous prebates that will be accompanied with rampant fraud)

    • (2)eliminate corporate income taxes that are merely similar to hidden, regressive sales taxes.

    • (3)Tax all forms of income above the poverty level (including interest income, capital gains, inheritance, etc.) a flat 17%, and remove ALL tax loop-holes and deductions.

    That will give you a tax curve that is TRULY progressive, and approaches a NEUTRAL 17%.

    So, which effective income tax system rate do you want?

    30%
    27% _
    24% _ _ _ PROGRESSIVE-to-REGRESSIVE (un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax)
    21% _ _ _ _ _
    18% _ _ _ _ _X_ _
    15% _ _X _ _ _ _ _X
    12% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ X
    09% _X _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    06% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    03% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    00% X_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    __$0K $30K 50K 100K __ 200K __ 300K __ 400K __ 500K _ … INCOME


    17% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _X
    15% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ X
    12% _ _ _ _ _ _ _ X
    19% _ _ _ X
    06% _ _ X PROGRESSIVE-to-NEUTRAL (17% Flat income tax
    03% _ X only on income above the poverty level)
    00% X
    __$0K $30K 50K 100K __ 200K __ 300K __ 400K __ 500K _ … INCOME

    Do you really think taxing spending is PROGRESSIVE?
    Even with a prebate ($2400 for a single person; $5902 for a family of four)?
    Voters had better do their homework on this, or they can add one more regressive system to the list of things that have been widening the disparity trend for 30+ years.

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 12:28 PM
    Comment #240584

    Which tax system do you want?

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 12:31 PM
    Comment #240586

    “Which tax system do you want?”

    I want the FAIRTAX.

    Posted by: tomd at December 12, 2007 1:07 PM
    Comment #240587

    Why?

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 1:29 PM
    Comment #240588

    I want the FairTax because at appx 50k per year, I will pay less taxes. My Daughter wants the FairTax because living below the poverty level, she will pay less taxes. My boss wants the FairTax because at over 300K last year, he would pay less in taxes.

    Dan, I think you oppose the FairTax because it will spoil your agenda of wealth redistribution.

    I challange all on this blog to figure their taxes using the FairTax plan as written in HR-25 and compare it to what they are paying now. Which do you want?

    Posted by: tomd at December 12, 2007 1:33 PM
    Comment #240589
    Source: ALIPAC.US: Our archives indicate that Mike Huckabee supported in-state tuition benefits for illegal aliens and opposed ICE raids to round up illegal aliens working at Tyson Chicken plants in his home state of Arkansas. Tyson is a large contributor to Mike Huckabee’s campaigns.
    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 1:35 PM
    Comment #240593
    tomd wrote: I want the FairTax because at appx 50k per year, I will pay less taxes.
    Think so?

    Are you sure about that?
    And what about the regressive tax curve.
    Did you know that the un-FairTax.org’s 30% National Sales Tax/Prebate system will fall short of raising current revenue levels by over $600 Billion?
    Do you know what that means?
    That means the 30% National Sales tax (based on independent sources) will have to be raised to 34% .
    And if you have massive spending on medical (which will be taxed), like some people I know, do you realize how damaging that will be?
    I don’t think you have thought it through very well at all.

    tomd wrote: My Daughter wants the FairTax because living below the poverty level, she will pay less taxes.
    The current tax system does not tax the poor that much anyway. But, when you are poor, a few thousand dollars is a lot.
    tomd wrote: My boss wants the FairTax because at over 300K last year, he would pay less in taxes.
    This is very true.

    The wealthy will get a HUGE tax cut.
    No doubt about it.
    You are confirming the REGRESSIVE nature of the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax/Prebate system.
    And when insufficient revenues are realized, and the 30% is increased, which group do you think will get hammered the most?
    Your group.

    tomd wrote: Dan, I think you oppose the FairTax because it will spoil your agenda of wealth redistribution.
    Nonsense.

    Your comment has no credibility at all.
    After all, since I am in the six-figure income group, it will most likely help me much more than you.
    I can make six figures, my home and vehicles are all paid-off, my children are out of college, I have no debt, and I can almost certainly get by on a much smaller percentage of my annual income than you.
    If it were pure selfishness on my part, I’d say: “Sure, bring it on.”.
    Besides, I support a FLAT income tax system that is PROGRESSIVE-to-NEUTRAL.
    Did you ever look to see what your tax would be with a 17% Income Tax only on income above the poverty level?
    You say your income is $50K per year?
    Then, if the poverty level is $11K for a single person, you would only pay 17% on $36K, which would be $6120, which is only 12.24% of $50K.
    Did you know you already pay more than that on Social Security and Medicare (e.g. 15.3%).
    Below, under the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax system, as a single person, you’d get a prebate of $2400.
    That is essentially the tax on $8000 of spending.
    However, after that, all spending is taxed at 30%.
    Therefore, if you save $12,000 per year, your taxes will be $9,000 ! That’s 18% of your gross income of $50K.
    That’s much more than the $6120 in taxes in the 17% Income Tax only on income above the poverty level.
    For the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales tax system to match the 17% Flat Income tax on $50K income, you would have to save $21,600 (only spend $28,400).
    So, you might want to look a little closer before you make your mind up.
    You are supporting a tax system that is PROGRESSIVE-to-REGRESSIVE if you support the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax.

    In a way, I hope you and others get your un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax system.

    tomd wrote: I challange all on this blog to figure their taxes using the FairTax plan as written in HR-25 and compare it to what they are paying now. Which do you want?
    I already did that above.

    I will repeat it for you again using the FairTax.org’s own data from www.fairtax.org/PDF/WhatIsTheDifferenceBetweenTaxRates.pdf (Page 4 of FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax example)
    Notice that their table omits income.
    Why is that?
    That’s because they do not want you looking at tax relative to income.
    The un-FairTax.org’s Eff.Tax column is a pure fraud, because it can not calculate Effective Tax without including Income also.
    Have you not noticed this slight of hand. It’s a fraud.

    POPL = Percent of Poverty Level ($25,660 for family of 4)
    Eff.Tax = Effective Tax

    For a family of four (prebate is $5902; NOTE: prebate for single person is $2400):
    POPL _ Spending __FairTax___Prebate _NetTax_____Eff.Tax
    25% ___ $6415 ____ $1,475 __ $5,902 _ ($4,427) _ -69.0%
    50% ___ $12,830 __ $2,951 __ $5,902 _ ($2,951) _ -23.0%
    100% __ $25,660 __ $5,902 __ $5,902 _______ $0 ___ 0.0%
    150% __ $38,490 __ $8,853 __ $5,902 ___ $2,951 ___ 7.7%
    200% __ $51,320 __ $11,804 _ $5,902 ___ $5,902 __ 11.5%
    300% __ $76,980 __ $17,705 _ $5,902 __ $11,903 __ 15.3%
    400% __ $102,640 _ $23,607 _ $5,902 __ $17,705 __ 17.2%

    Now, let’s add the Income and IncomeTaxRate columns for a family of four (what the FairTax.org 30% Sales Tax proponents don’t want you to see)
    POPL _ Spending __FairTax___Prebate _NetTax_____Eff.Tax _ Income __IncomeTaxRate
    25% ___ $6415 ____ $1,475 __ $5,902 _ ($4,427) _ -69.0% _ $8,000 __ -49.7%
    50% ___ $12,830 __ $2,951 __ $5,902 _ ($2,951) _ -23.0% _ $15,000 _ -13.7%
    100% __ $25,660 __ $5,902 __ $5,902 _______ $0 ___ 0.0% _ $27,000 __ 6.65%
    150% __ $38,490 __ $8,853 __ $5,902 ___ $2,951 ___ 7.7% _ $40,000 _ 14.11%
    200% __ $51,320 __ $11,804 _ $5,902 ___ $5,902 __ 11.5% _ $53,000 _ 17.91%
    300% __ $76,980 __ $17,705 _ $5,902 __ $11,903 __ 15.3% _ $200,000 _ 8.60%
    400% __ $102,640 _ $23,607 _ $5,902 __ $17,705 __ 17.2% _ $500,000 _ 4.98%

    There’s the math and an honest, straight-forward example using un-FairTax.org’s own data.
    If you still want the unFairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax, that’s fine with me.
    Because it will help me and other people with six (or more) figure incomes more than it will help you.

    And don’t forget, under the unFairTax.org 30% Sales Tax system, medical and food will be taxed too. But guess what won’t be taxed? Capital gains, interest income, inheritance income, and other forms of investment income. Whooohooooo ! You bet. Give me the unFairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax system. If the lower and middle income level voters are dumb enough to want it, then they deserve it.

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 2:09 PM
    Comment #240594

    CORRECTION: Then, if the poverty level is $14K for a single person, …

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 2:14 PM
    Comment #240597

    Dan,

    I’ve got an errand to run, but I’ll be back shortly to further respond. I didn’t say you were against it because it would hurt you. I said it would spoil your agenda of wealth redistribution. Do you deny that?

    Posted by: tomd at December 12, 2007 2:21 PM
    Comment #240598

    Yes, I do deny it.
    Why?
    Because a flat 17% only on income above the poverty level is not weatlh re-distribution.
    It is merely a fair and flat percentage.

    Are you saying a flat 17% (only on income above the poverty level) is unfair and amounts to weatlh redistribution?

    Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 2:30 PM
    Comment #240601

    Tax systems, with respect to income, are one of the following:

    • (1) progressive

    • (2) regressive

    • (3) neutral

    • (4) progressive-to-regressive

    • (5) progressive-to-neutral
    Some people promote systems that tax spending.
    But, not only in theory, but in practice, sales taxes are regressive, and the prebate only makes the lowest part of the tax cuvrve progressive. After that, the tax curve turns regressive again. This is what the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax/Prebate supporters don’t want you to know.
    But guess what the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax/Prebate supporters still attempt to do?
    They twist, contort, and squirm to try to prove that it is progressive-to-neutral relative to income.
    If the goal is to prove taxation is progressive-to-neutral (as if progressive and/or neutral taxation is more fair), then why tax spending? After all, the number of sales transactions per day out-number the number of incomes per year. Which is easier to monitor? This in no way means any tax system will be perfect.

    However, the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax/Prebate system will be more unfair than the regressive system we have now.

    And the current system is regressive due to a myriad of tax loop-holes.

    Many polls have been done, and most Americans polled feel that the most fair tax system is a flat income tax, with a poverty-level exemption (e.g. no one pays tax on income below the poverty level).

    Currently, less than 17% of the 535 Congress persons in Congress support the un-FairTax.org’s 30% Sales Tax system. Thus, it’s chances are actually very poor. And today, some Republicans are pushing again for a flat income tax system (hopefully with a poverty level exemption). The current system has a standard deduction too, so it is progressive at the low income levels too. In fact, all three tax systems are progressive at the low income level. The big question is the shape of the tax curve at and after the middle-income levels. That is, do you support:

    • (1) a tax system that is regressive (i.e. tax rate relative decreases as income increase)?

    • (2) Or should the tax rate relative to income continue to increase as income increases? That is, a purely progressive tax sysetm?

    • (3) Or should it start out progressive and approach a flat, neutral flat rate (e.g. 17%) as income increases?
    Most Americans polled, beleive that (3) is the most fair system. Many of the wealthy will naturally prefer (1) which is regressive, and hate (2) which is progressive.

    Which system is most fair, and also raise the necessary revenues?

    See discussions of a flat (neutral) income tax systems:

  • en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flat_tax

  • www.ncpa.org/ba/ba136.html

  • www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A50031-2003Nov1?language=printer

  • www.cato.org/pubs/policy_report/v29n4/cpr29n4-1.html

  • http://www.albionmonitor.com/12-21-95/forbestax.html

  • www.hoover.org/publications/digest/2993776.html
  • Posted by: d.a.n at December 12, 2007 3:12 PM
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