DownsizeDC.org
November 30, 2005
Kill the Death Tax and do it soon
By Jim Babka

DownsizeDC.org has joined the Death Tax Repeal Working Group signing on to a letter calling upon Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) to bring the Death Tax Repeal bill up for a vote by February 27. We're not fond of the first paragraph of the letter, however, we support the goal. The letter is attached to this post in .pdf. We recommend Adobe Acrobat to open it.

A very witty person once said, "There are only three things in life that are certain: You'll be taxed, you'll die, and then, you'll be taxed again." Well, if the Death Tax Repeal bill passes, that means only two of those are certain.

Karl Marx, who believed in a very strong State (civil government), believed it was so important to take away inheritances, that he included it as one of his ten planks. At DownsizeDC.org, we see this as regressive, immoral, and counter-productive.

Businesses have, in the past, been destroyed by this tax -- particularly when the death of the owner is sudden and unexpected (unprepared for). That means jobs lost and capital squandered.

It is the right of an individual to dispose of what he's bled for, sweated over, and invested in -- heck, even paid taxes on -- as he sees fit. It should strike us as cruel to steal that so that politicians have more money to squander.

Perhaps he wants his assets to go to a cause in which he believes. Perhaps she wants to help his children, or grandchildren.

And if the money goes to taxes instead of heirs, will the deceased's progency be denied educational opportunities, home ownership, or other things?

Now, some will say, "This is just a way to let the rich get away without paying their 'fair share.'" Leaving aside that determining "fair share" is a slippery concept at best, so what?

After all, our biggest donors are generally the richest ones. The richest people create the most jobs. The richest people are, in the end, "people." Do they deserve to pay a special tax just because of their success? It's a fact that their heirs can even choose to squander the wealth, and we'd better off than if the politicians got their hands on that money.

No, the aptly-named Death Tax is a bad idea that steals from widows, children, and saps a society of capital, and we're pleased to be able to do this little bit to help kill it -- to hasten the day when we can sing, "Oh death, where is thy tax? Oh grave, where are thy tax accountants and politicians?"

Filed under Wealth & Poverty
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