There are some who have taken the "no new taxes" pledge in an attempt to win voters. I must admit, it's an attractive phrase, especially to the middle class. However, lets take a look at what happens to the middle class when "no new taxes" also include a refusal to close tax loopholes for the wealthy and businesses that earn millions and billions of dollars in profit.
Right here in the state of Alabama, the middle class state workers and education workers are taking a terrible beating in terms of benefits, pensions, retirement, and salaries. Cost of living increases seem to be a thing of the past. Workers are contributing more toward health insurance and retirement, which in turn lowers their take home pay. While they bring home less, the cost of living is steady rising and they're finding themselves drowning in an attempt to keep their heads above water.
As middle class Americans struggle to make ends meet, the multimillion dollar
corporations continue to enjoy tax loopholes that exempt them from paying their fair share of taxes, raking in millions and billions of dollars in profits. The rich get richer, while the middle class working man and woman continue to fight for survival.
Let's be perfectly honest. I don't dislike the rich for being rich. There is absolutely nothing wrong with wealth. However, there is something wrong when the wealthy are treated as gods; too valuable to be touched at the expense of the middle class. It's just plain wrong to make things tougher on the middle class while continuing to exempt the wealthy. It's wrong to lay-off teachers but refuse to close loopholes. It's wrong to freeze the pay of firemen, policemen, emergency workers, and other state workers while refusing to close loopholes. It's wrong to take millions of dollars from an education system that's already been hacked into while refusing to close loopholes.
The flip side of that argument is closing tax loopholes on corporations will cause a loss of jobs and higher prices for consumers. To my knowledge, there is no proof of that theory.
But assuming it is at least partially true, companies with millions and billions in profits can afford to pay a little more in taxes, but struggling people in the middle class and in poverty don't have the ability to pay more without losing something critical like food, clothing, and shelter. Besides, for every loophole that one company uses to avoid taxes means some other company that's paying taxes will have to absorb a portion of that cost.
I believe the middle class and the poor will rise up in the 2012 elections and send a strong message that says, "We're tired of having everything taken from us. It's time for a change!"