1980’s Redux – Higher Taxes in Maryland

It’s for the children… or the deficit…. or something else.

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley wants to increase the sales tax by 20% (plus add more items that are subject to the tax such as property management, better known as rent). He wants to increase the state income tax on individuals and corporations, always a great economic development tool. No gas tax increase announced yet, but January is a long way off.

Do we really need these tax increases? Of course not.

Former Maryland Senate Minority Leader, Sen. Lowell Stoltzfus makes a compelling argument against the necessity of such increases in an op-ed piece that ran yesterday in the Baltimore Sun and in today’s Tilghman Times. No “draconian” cuts to the state gravy train are even needed. Merely reducing the rate of state spending growth is enough to do the job.

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Unfortunately, such a simple concept cannot be grasped by the Democrat power machine in Annapolis. I am reminded of the 1980’s when Ronald Reagan attempted to reduce the Federal deficit by reducing the rate of growth in non-defense spending. The response of the Democrat-controlled Congress and the media was to accuse President Reagan of killing children and throwing entire families from their homes and into the streets.

As Brian Griffiths points out, O’Malley’s proposal will harm the very people that O’Malley and his left wing pals claim to be helping. As jobs are lost in Maryland due to these tax increases, and they most certainly will be lost, who do suppose will be the victims of this economic contraction? Certainly not CEO’s. No, it will be lower wage, entry level workers.

The choice is relatively simple one for citizens of the Free State. Should O’Malley adopt a plan that is merely a throwback to the disproved Keynesian economics of pre-1981 America, or should he drop back and reformulate a plan that more closely mirrors the Reaganite ideals of slowing the growth of spending?

While his party may love to malign such ideas, they have proven successful enough that one of O’Malley’s heroes, Bill Clinton, even adopted such policies during his eight years in the White House. He just wouldn’t admit where he got them from.

(Crossposted on Delmarva Dealings)

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