Robin Hood Rebate

I’ll quickly weigh in on this strictly for the record.

$300 or $600 or $1200 or whatever tax rebate checks are not any sort of solution for any sort of economic situation. They aren’t part of “fixing” whatever different sorts of folks claim is wrong with the economy. They aren’t really going to change anything.

However, they are giving tax money back to Americans, and therefore they’re undeniably good.

I’m disturbed about the fact that some people who don’t pay taxes are getting rebate checks. That, my friends, is Wrong. Those folks, and I’m not making any sort of statement about them other than they don’t pay taxes yet are getting rebate checks, are getting free money from taxpayers. The same taxpayers who are getting smaller rebates than the President originally called for. Like I said, it’s disturbing.

What makes it even weirder, to me personally, is that (if I understand correctly) my family will not get a rebate for my wife’s contribution, because my wife doesn’t work.

Now, I wouldn’t normally expect my wife to get a tax rebate (because she pays no taxes) if everyone else who paid no taxes was also not getting a tax rebate. But 35 million people who paid no taxes are getting some of their tax money back. Oops…They’re getting my tax money back. Except for my wife, though. She doesn’t get her own tax money, my tax money, or anyone else’s tax money.

Some Democrats are upset that unemployment benefits weren’t extended or that Food Stamp benefits weren’t increased. You can mock this rebate plan however you want, but it’s basically a quick way to get tax money away from the government and back into the hands of the people. It’s just that the Democrats see it as merely another wealth redistribution plan, not a way to cut the tax burden. Call it the Robin Hood Rebate. And we’ve seen how all the other wealth redistribution plans have worked so far. The party that vowed to bring fiscal responsibility back to government is refunding money never collected. Nice.

Businesses are getting some tax breaks, which is good. Tax breaks/reductions are where real change can come from. No doubt this isn’t nearly enough, of course, but maybe they can give someone else some of my tax money (well, someone else besides my wife, at least) and try to keep glossing the tax rates over a bit longer.

Comments

  1. Rebates are stupid – The concept is basically the government gives you a check today – then turns around and demands that you return the money next April 15th 2008. How this helps the working poor is beyond me. They end up being screwed, as they are spending money that they don’t have. This is like a massive payday loan – except you have the IRS as the collection agent. Now if you are hell bent on this ‘rebate’ idea. Why cut checks? All you are doing is incurring coast to produce and mail the checks and all of its bureaucracy. All you really need to do is designate April 1st though the 15th as a income tax freedom period. All wages earned during that time period are subject to withholding taxes but withholding taxes do not have to be withheld.

  2. The reason they can’t just do a tax cut is that only about 50% of Americans pay income tax. If they made a tax cut some lamo would cry ‘tax cuts for the rich!’ The thing that’s so bad about rebates, on the other hand, is they are borrowing money to pay you. Could you imagine if your boss borrowed money from you to write your paycheck? Sixpence none the richer.

  3. ‘Frankly, in talking about the stimulus package, one of the concerns I have is that we will probably go out and borrow this $150 B from the Chinese, and when we get those rebate checks most people will go out and buy stuff that’s been imported from China. I have to wonder whose economy is going to be stimulated the most by this package.’ – Gov. Huckabee on MSNBC debate last night.

    We have a trade deficit that’s 7% of annual GNP. We have a federal budget deficit that’s 4% of GNP. So what do we do to get out of this recession that’s been brought on by the collapse of the value of the dollar? Hand out $150 billion more dollars we don’t have. What the hell, we’ll print more. Then we expect that will do what to the value of the dollar overseas, increase it? That’s insane. As the value of the dollar plummets, the price of oil and other consumer products goes up. Why would our good buddies the Saudis or communist Chinese want even more of our worthless money? Oh yeah, there is the obvious reason that they’re collecting those dollars so they can collapse our economy, but wait, those countries are our friends. They’d never do that. They love us.

  4. I just used a website to calculate the rebate my family of 4 will receive on the $33,267 of income tax we paid last year. The answer: ‘You’ll receive approximately $0.00.’ Thanks, I’ll try not to spend it all in one place.