A Real Growth Agenda Requires Tough Leadership
Tax cuts and real tax reform are great policies that America desperately needs to grow our economy. I believe there are more pro-growth policies that we can do. I believe America can do more. Let me be very clear: default would be and will be a serious problem that would make an already serious problem worse. Running trillion dollar deficits and national debt will cause default at some point regardless of whether Washington continues to raise the debt limit. Nobody, including the Tea Party and Conservatives, is advocating for going into default.
While we are getting federal spending under control, we must have sustainable economic growth through keeping taxes low. We must take the corporate tax rate to zero percent. Corporations do not pay these taxes; individual consumers pay them through increased prices. The corporate tax was just Congress’ way to raise individual income taxes indirectly. Next, eliminate the capital gains tax and the tax rate on repatriated foreign profits for American businesses, so that the business sector can make investments and create jobs. Then eliminate the regressive payroll tax for both workers and employers so that the economy can grow faster.
We must substantially cut the individual income tax rate to 25 percent to begin eliminating economic uncertainty and allow individuals Americans to keep more of what they earn. The notion that we can continue to raise taxes so that government can “invest,” spend taxpayer money, is going to grow the economy is ludicrous. To grow our economy we must free individuals from more government confiscation of their tax dollars; let people keep more of what they earn. Our ultimate goal should be to completely repeal the current income tax code and the Internal Revenue Service, and replace it with a new tax code that is fairer, simpler, more transparent, and flatter called the FairTax.
We must also implement substantial budget cuts to get to eventually balancing the federal budget per year. The debt reform plan that the Tea Party endorsed, called the Cut, Cap, and Balance Plan, is a good step forward. I believe we can do more to shrink the federal government and grow the individual American citizen. The notion that we can continue to raise taxes (I mean “raise revenues”) to cover our debt and deficits is outrageous. The only way to nip our budget problems in the bud is to cut spending. Looking at what our annual deficit is we’d need to make budget cuts ranging from 83 billion dollars to 85 billion dollars per month to cover our annual trillion dollar deficits. The biggest spending drain on our economy is the so-called “entitlements.” We need to restructure or eliminate the entitlement programs, take them off autopilot, and put them into the regular federal budget.
We also need to cap federal spending to keep the federal government focused on the Constitutional limits in the Constitution. Caps are the only true enforceable way we can put federal spending on a path to a balanced budget. We ought to cap federal spending at 18 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and designate military and defense spending at no lower than 4 percent of that 18 percent, while eliminating wasteful spending. Then force the federal government to balance the budget with a Constitutional Amendment that both limits spending and requires a super-majority for raising taxes.
To continue growing the economy and shrinking the federal government, we need to eliminate all subsidies because a subsidy is just another name for a tax on consumers. Force companies and products to compete on a level playing field in a free economy. We also need to streamline, and possibly eliminate, all unnecessary and burdensome regulations. Get the government out of the way of individual Americans from experiencing the opportunities of achieving their American Dream.
Globalization is not a bad thing. It has nothing to do with international governmental bodies and the quest for a one-world government. Globalization is just the result of the information age causing the world to become an increasingly smaller world; it has made it easier to move goods, resources, and people worldwide. Therefore, we need to continue to seek ways to expand free trade with other countries around the world so that American businesses can freely compete in the global marketplace offering American goods and services to wider audiences and more customers.
The growth agenda that I have just outlined will be hard, but it will work. It’ll only hurt because we let ourselves to get as deep into the debt hole that we currently have dug for ourselves. All of a sudden, the 85 billion dollar Obama sequester in a year doesn’t seem all that bad, considering how much we truly need to cut per month. America will need real leaders who will be able to make the hard and tough decisions to keep us from becoming the next Greece. It’s time we start self-governing ourselves and get the government out of the way. Who will stand with me for essential liberty and growth?
Trey Mays is an independent Conservative political commentator. He can be contacted by email at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @TreyMays and Like him on Facebook @TreyMaysUSA.