Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Welfare Recipient, Ben Carson, Says He Would Raise Taxes On Poor Because They Have Pride

This past Sunday, Fox News' Chris Wallace interviewed self proclaimed serious Presidential candidate, Dr. Ben Carson. Wallace asked the good doctor about the tax plan he would enact if he ever became leader of the free world:

Well, I like the idea of a proportional tax. That way you pay according to your ability. And I got that idea, quite frankly, from the Bible, tithing. You make $10 billion a year, you pay $1 billion. You make $10 a year, you pay $1. You get the same rights. That's pretty darn fair, if you ask me.

Now, some people say it's not fair because, you know, the poor people can't afford to pay that dollar. That's very condescending. You know, I grew up very poor. I experienced every economic level. And I can tell you poor people have pride, too. And they don't want to be just taken care of.

 Okay, there's two big problems I have with Carson's comments. The first is something I wrote about almost a year ago regarding Carson from a McClatchy report. Many people may not know that the esteemed former neurosurgeon himself grew up receiving much help from the government:

No doubt, Mother Carson deserves tremendous credit, but – in the words of a political sound bite from the last presidential election – she didn’t do it alone. Carson, in his book, tells how his grades improved tremendously when a government program provided him with free eyeglasses because he could barely see. Not only that, in “Gifted Hands” we read this nugget: “By the time I reached ninth grade, mother had made such strides that she received nothing but food stamps. She couldn’t have provided for us and kept up the house without that subsidy.”
 No doubt Carson thinks his own mother was severely lacking in pride for allowing the government to offer her assistance. Or maybe not.

It’s hard not to see Carson’s own upbringing coming into view here. He grew up in meager surroundings in Detroit and Boston, in a family that made use of public assistance programs like food stamps. The culture was different then, Carson insists. “I think there was a time when people were not proud of taking handouts,” he said. “There were more people who did have that drive and determination. You do what you have to do."
As always, it's okay to receive government help if you're a Republican. If not, then you should have enough pride and self-respect to go hungry for a little while until your next paycheck arrives.

The second issue I have is, as Wallace explained later on,  that Carson's plan would provide a massive tax cut for the wealthy.

WALLACE: But, Doctor, here is a problem with flat tax in the real world -- according to the Tax Policy Center, to raise the same amount of revenue we do now, the tax rate would have to be in the low to mid 20 percent range.

...

WALLACE: Low and middle income families would get a big tax hike, while wealthy families would actually get a tax cut.

In Carson's world, we should think that poor people should be insulted for wanting the government to go easy on them, but for some reason, rich people don't seem to have that same level of dignity. Later on, Carson went to argue that his solution to poor people paying higher tax rates would be to increase offshore drilling. How that would said poor people with the tax hike Carson wants to impose on them is a bit of a mystery.

This is gonna be a fun election.

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