Herman Cain's Commentary Archive 2009-2012

April 12, 2010

VAT: The cowardly tax

April 12, 2010
By Herman Cain

Now that President Obama and the Democrats have generated a projected record $10 trillion in new debt over the next 10 years, they are now singing their favorite song: We must raise taxes!

Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., sent the first signal a few weeks ago when he said paying taxes is the price we pay for living in this great country. Never mind that we are paying too much and that too much of our money is being wasted.

One of the president's senior economic advisers, Paul Volcker, said recently in a speech that "we must raise taxes" to deal with the deficit. Never mind that the administration and the Democrats made an already bad deficit situation worse, and never mind that they were aware of the situation before they jammed the disastrous health-care bill through Congress for the president's signature.

It is outrageous that they have played the taxpayers for the sucker punch of the century. They ignored the coming deficits of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid while passing the massive health-care bill. To make matters worse, Mr. Volcker is suggesting the dreaded value-added-tax, also called a VAT tax.

Please insert the scream of your choice right here if you already know the implications of a new VAT on this country. Otherwise, keep reading.

A VAT is not a single new tax. It is several new sneak-a-taxes. It taxes each phase in the development of a product or service until it is ultimately sold to the end user, and you also pay any applicable retail sales taxes. These intermediate taxes are passed along to the consumer and are reflected as a net increase in the price of the goods or service.

The doubly outrageous aspect of the VAT is that it is on top of all the other state and federal taxes we pay. Paul Volcker and the Democrats like the VAT because it is hidden from the clueless and uninformed voter, who will forget about it soon after it is passed if it is passed.

The VAT is also a cowardly tax increase because these same clueless and uninformed voters will easily blame the greedy retailers for raising the prices of their merchandise. And for the 50 percent of the taxpayers who have figured out how not to pay any taxes at all, this administration and Congress will find a way to give them a VAT exemption.

Just as Obamacare puts this country a giant step closer to becoming the United States of Europe, passage of a VAT would certainly seal the deal as the New Europe, which would be nearly impossible to undo. I said nearly impossible, not completely.

The answer to reducing the deficit and supercharging the economy is to replace the tax code with the single-rate Fair Tax. This solution assumes, however, that there is no continued increase in federal spending. With this administration and Democrat-controlled Congress, stopping the spending is completely impossible.

Obama and the Democrats in Congress would never consider the answer to reducing the debt and stimulating the economy I just proposed, because it does not achieve their goals of a government power grab, expanding the role of government in our lives or creating more social programs for the clueless and the uninformed so they will continue to elect and re-elect liberal Democrats to Congress and the White House.

Never mind what We the People want, but we will remember in November.