TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

WSJ: Did You Know Hurricane Sandy Favors Higher Marginal Tax Rates?

Wall Street Journal editorial:  Did You Know Hurricane Sandy Favors Higher Marginal Tax Rates?:

Our former editor Robert Bartley once quipped (fondly) about the writer Jude Wanniski that he thought a capital-gains tax cut could intercept a Soviet SS-20 missile in mid-flight. We were reminded of that monomania Tuesday as the political left more or less declared in unison that the ravages of Hurricane Sandy prove that America needs bigger government.

We know liberals are worried that President Obama might lose next week, but are they so panicky that they want to suggest even before the storm has passed that Mitt Romney and Republicans are against disaster relief? Apparently so. It's an especially low-rent tactic, akin to blaming the tea party for Jared Lee Loughner's shooting of Gabby Giffords. But it's equally absurd to argue that a once-in-a-century storm means you can't block-grant Medicaid. ...

The rush to use Hurricane Sandy to justify a bigger federal government makes us wonder if there's an excuse liberals won't use to grow Leviathan? The reality of the federal fisc is that whoever wins next Tuesday is going to have to choose between functions best done by the federal government and those that can be done better by others. A government that can't distinguish between a big storm and Big Bird is simply too big.

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Of course Romney is not for cutting FEMA funding. Or Medicare spending. or Social Security spending. and will increase military spending by $2 trillion.

No, Romney is only for reducing the deficit after cutting tax rates by $5 trillion. he will offset it by ... something. But if you actually try to pin him down to anything specific, well, it is certainly not that.

Well, Mitt, with all the things you have backtracked on and excluded from cuts, there is nothing left.

Posted by: Of Course Not | Oct 31, 2012 10:15:42 AM