The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

July 8, 2013

Politics around the edges


---- — Remember a few months ago, when politicians were begging for our votes, all we heard about was their concern for the economy and for us not being able to find decent jobs that provided a good wage and benefits? They got our votes and have since stopped worrying about our jobs and the slumbering economy.

Instead of working on this No. 1 challenge to our country, they are playing politics with the question of immigration by dealing with it in a way that they can eventually blame each other for failure to find a solution. While the Congress plays politics, the President runs away from his outrageous failure as a Chief Executive to control the IRS, the State Department, the Secret Service, the NSA, and the Justice Department, all who have scandals of mismanagement or worse.

Now we learn that our dysfunctional government is moving to "simplify" the tax code by eliminating the tax incentives that apply to home ownership. No longer would you be able to deduct the interest on your mortgage from your tax bill. This is not tax simplification at all. It is simply a way for the government to raise taxes and get more of your hard-earned money to squander.

If they were serious about jobs and the economy, and wished to simplify the tax code, they could do so with little difficulty. First, reduce the corporate income tax rate to 20 percent on all earnings with no deductions. This would provide incentive to American companies to return their manufacturing to the United States. It would also provide incentive for foreign companies to build plants here close to their customers, the largest consuming economy in the world. Second, establish a flat universal tax rate of 18 percent on all income from all sources exempting the first $40,000 of salary or wages. These two steps would launch our economy back to being the envy of the world and provide the opportunities that we so desperately need. The only reason they won't consider working on these points is that it would eliminate thousands of unnecessary government jobs.

Instead of dealing with the real issues, our elected officials will continue to ask us for more money so they can play politics around the edges of what is slowly destroying this great country.

Henry A. Truslow, Sunbury