Like the people who are in love with the Flat Tax or Fair Tax or National Sales Tax or whatever alternative to income tax they can devise. They're all a bunch of filthy liars. For as much as they cite high principles for wanting to abolish the income tax in favor of these other systems, their primary goal is for them personally to pay less in taxes. That's all that it's about. They somehow imagine that these other schemes will allow them to pay less tax, so they support it.
And you can bet your bottom dollar that if they determined they'd end up paying more through one of these other systems, they'd most certainly oppose it. That's why proponents of these alternatives always lowball the number, as it's the only way that it sounds preferable over our current system. They're told that a 17% flat tax would pay for everything and if you cite experts who say it'd have to be much higher, they'll insist that you're wrong. To even discuss the higher rate undermines their entire argument, so they refuse to even consider it. Because again, all they're interested in is lower taxes, not a fairer system.
And the whole thing is just retarded. Seriously. Because if you decrease tax revenues without cutting spending, you just get deficits. Government can't be drowned no matter how high the deficits run. And so we'd need to raise just as much money no matter which tax scheme we developed. And then we'd be back into the business of robbing Peter to pay Paul, which is the exact sort of thing that these guys were bitching about in the first place. They take a principled stand against using the tax code to implement social policies, yet any scheme they devise will have that exact effect.
And I've got the same problem with toll roads too. I suppose I'm not against the building of tollways if they're special purpose ones being solely designed for a specific clientele; particularly if the people who'd use it most aren't the ones who'd pay for it otherwise. But the taxing of existing roads, as they're doing here in Austin, is simply outrageous. It's just a way for Republicans to tax people without it being called a "tax." But a toll is a tax, no matter what you call it.
And these guys play these sorts of games all the time. They've been trained to hate the word "tax" but still can't get around the fact that Americans want an effective government and an effective government costs money that can only be collected through taxes. Even Republicans don't really want the crappy government that they profess to support and expect the government to take care of them just like everyone else. And so they develop silly principles to justify tax schemes that they imagine will let them pay less taxes, or simply change the word so it's not "tax."
But our society requires a certain level of tax revenue no matter what you call it, so all these silly games are not only annoying, they're dangerous. And you end up with horrible situations like California Republicans playing chicken in support of principles they don't really believe in. And in the end, they're not really against the idea of good government. They just want to make sure they're not the ones paying for it.