Regarding Jason Furman’s “Biden’s Tax Plan Would Spur Economic Growth” (op-ed, Oct. 6): What Mr. Furman fails to prove is the idea that state redistribution of resources grows the pool of real resources. Clearly the proposal increases GDP, which arbitrarily records government spending as growth.
The rich aren’t actually hoarding wads of dollars under their mattresses. Mr. Furman suggests that the Biden tax code would “increase the incentive for productive innovation instead of tax avoidance.” I think not. Either way, the common man understands that he must first ensure that his resources haven’t been seized by the IRS before he can productively invest them.
Mr. Furman repeats one of the most misleading statements of the Biden campaign, i.e., only those making over $400,000 will see a tax increase under the Biden plan. His own article states most of the ways that this isn’t true. First, increasing the wage base for payroll tax affects anyone making over about $138,000. Second, and more important, increasing corporate taxes affects everyone, even the half of the country that pays no personal federal income tax. Corporations don’t pay tax, people do. Where does he think that money comes from? Third, eliminating the step-up in basis at death will be a tax increase on anyone, regardless of income, who inherits a stock or other asset. So how are the Biden tax increases limited only to those earning over $400,000?
The only thing that kept President Obama’s economy from tanking was the fracking-based oil and gas boom—which progressives want to kill. Isn’t that killing the goose that lays the golden eggs?
It’s hard to see how Joe Biden’s tax plan would grow anything except the government. The author doesn’t mention Mr. Biden’s vow to eliminate the Trump tax cuts, which directly benefited millions of low- and middle-income workers.
Also, eliminating the step-up basis at death will create an accounting nightmare for most taxpayers, as well as bankrupting many who have few liquid assets but live in highly appreciated houses.
Jason Furman ignores powerful, direct, empirical evidence in the recent Federal Reserve report that shows real record gains in income and wealth by the less-advantaged under President Trump’s economy before Covid. Mr. Furman asks us to disbelieve our lying eyes.
He also talks of closing tax loopholes. But Joe Biden’s plan would reopen one of the largest: the full deductibility of state and local taxes. That loophole benefits chiefly those who earn more than three times the median income. He also predicts greater tax collection efficiency and less tax avoidance; but higher tax rates always inspire greater tax avoidance, not less.
Jason Furman isn’t fooling anyone when he uses the positive-connotation word “share,” when he really means the negative-connotation word “redistribute.” He reminds me of a Christmas many years ago when my mother-in-law received a five-pound chocolate bar. It was huge. When she unwrapped it and showed it to everyone, a 5-year-old boy’s eyes went wide as dinner plates. He went over to her and said, “Grandma, I’ll share with you.”
Robert Allan Schwartz
I only have one question: Were you better off under the Obama/Biden years or during the past 3½ pre-Covid years under President Trump’s administration? I would especially ask that question of our Hispanic and African-American citizens. Seems to me a simple choice.
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