By Wayne Allyn Root, Former Libertarian Vice Presidential Nominee
Is Obama as smart as the leaders of Russia, China, Cuba, or any of the formerly communist Soviet Republics? Or, have the socialists and communists learned a lesson that Obama obviously has not?
Lesson #1 is Greece. If income redistribution works…if tax and spend is a model for America…why is Greece a bankrupt basket case threatening to bring down the entire European Union? A much more important question: Why is Greece, with a 45% income tax rate, a 23%
VAT tax (national sales tax) plus a host of other taxes, still hopelessly bankrupt? Greeks pay up to 70% to 80% of their income to the government. Yet Greece is insolvent. With all those heavy taxes, it took $160 billion to bail them out only one year ago. Now they need at least another $50 to 100 billion. Why would Obama want higher taxes for America, when Greece proves the model doesn’t work?
All those Greek voters elected socialist politicians because they promised fat pensions, free health care, and lavish early retirement. Now they face unimaginable poverty for years to come. So the lesson is that when politicians promise chocolate cake with no calories, they should be put in prison for fraud. Perhaps Obama should go to Greek’s socialist rulers and ask for advice before we wind up with our own Big Fat Greek Bankruptcy.
Lesson #2 is Cuba. Cuba has been a socialist state since before I was born. Their leader Raul Castro is a proud communist. Yet Cuba just passed the most sweeping reforms in history. Castro is slashing more than a million government jobs, cutting entitlements, encouraging more private sector entrepreneurship, giving more power to private companies, and reducing state spending.
One of the trademark features of Cuba’s socialist system- the universal monthly food ration- will be phased out. Castro said the ration given all Cubans since 1963 has become an “unsupportable burden” for Cuba’s bankrupt and crumbling government.
Wow! A Cuban communist leader is cutting a million government jobs, and eliminating Cuba’s version of food stamps. So, why is Obama desperately trying to raise taxes to socialist levels to keep our 21 million government employees all employed (with their bloated pensions) and maintain 45 million Americans on food stamps? Perhaps Professor Castro can give Obama a few pointers.
Lesson #3 is Russia. Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin seemed to be teaching a common fourth-grade history lesson on socialism when during a speech at the opening ceremony of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland he stated: “In the 20th century, the Soviet Union made the state role absolute…In the long run, this made the Soviet economy totally uncompetitive. This lesson cost us dearly.”
Putin and Castro have learned their lessons from experience. But Obama? Sounds like he needs to attend re-education camp. Or at least do the fourth grade over, since even fourth grade students know that socialism doesn’t work.
Obama’s stated game plan is to raise U.S. income tax rates to 40% (or higher), eliminate all deductions, take the cap off FICA (Social Security taxes), and of course he’s already passed a raft of new Obamacare taxes. A VAT tax may soon follow. Add it up. Under Obama, Americans could soon have a tax rate of 60% to 70% (after adding in state, local and property taxes).
Lesson #4 is found in ex-Communist countries around the world. Let’s contrast their tax rates with Obama’s stated goals in America:
- Russia 13% Flat Tax
- Bulgaria 10% Flat Tax
- Georgia 15% Flat Tax
- Romania 16% Flat Tax
- Czech Republic 15% Flat Tax
- Albania 10% Flat Tax
- Kazakhstan 10% Flat Tax
- Lithuania 15% Flat Tax
- Slovakia 19% Flat Tax
- Bosnia 10% Flat Tax
- Serbia 12% Flat Tax
- Hungry 16% Flat Tax
- Estonia 21% Flat Tax
So ask yourself again- Is Obama smarter than a communist? Looking at those tax rates, who would you think was the country with a socialist
tax system in place? Ask yourself what lessons those countries learned from socialism that turned them into Reagan-style capitalists?
Do you need more lessons? While Greece and many other high-tax, mixed economies in Europe are floundering, examine how the low tax model is performing around the world. Hong Kong, with its 16% flat tax and no capital gains tax, has 3.5% unemployment. Their economy is booming. Singapore has a tax of 3% to 20%, with unemployment at a remarkable 1.9%. Their economy is booming. Monaco and Cayman Islands both have income tax rates of 0%. Business has never been better.
Need more proof? The Index of Economic Freedom ranks Australia and New Zealand far above America under Obama. Australia’s unemployment rate is 4.9%, New Zealand’s 6.8%. Both are dramatically lower than America’s reported rate of 9.1%. It appears that crazy idea of economic freedom really works. Perhaps Obama should try it sometime.
In case you’re wondering…Greece’s unemployment rate is double digits. High taxes kill, not create jobs.
So ask the question again- Is Obama smarter than a communist? Perhaps Putin, Castro and some of the ex-communist leaders above should sit Comrade Obama down and give him an economics lesson. Fast. Before the U.S. economic collapse is beyond repair. Before the America we know and love is gone forever.
Wayne Allyn Root is a former libertarian vice presidential nominee. He now serves as chairman of the Libertarian NationalCongressional Committee. He is the best-selling author of “The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold & Tax Cuts.” His website: ROOTforAmerica.com