Dole's Moral Tax Cut

Commentary by Pete du Pont

Host intro: Bob Dole's proposed 15 percent tax cut is being sold for its economic benefits. But Pete du Pont of the National Center for Policy Analysis likes it for a very different reason.

First, let's agree that giving everyone in America a tax cut make economic sense. We're taxed at the highest levels ever. The Dole cuts would simply roll us back to where we were in 1992 - still too high, but an improvement.

I think there's another element to the Dole proposal, though: a moral one.

Liberals defend high taxes by saying that lots of other countries have much heavier tax burdens than ours. That's true, but their relationship between the individual and the state is very different from ours. The U.S. was founded by people who wanted independence from government. High taxes were a spark that lit the American revolution.

Dole understands this when he says the money is yours, not the government's. Remember: you don't have to justify a tax cut. The government has to justify taxes. Bill Clinton asks how a tax cut would be paid for. He never asked in 1993 how his tax increase would be paid for by the American people.

In the end, the chickens will come home to roost. A taxpayer revolt in the 1970s led to the Reagan tax cuts.

And the same pressure is building again. Taxpayers are going to demand their money back. And woe to any politician who stands in their way.

Well, those are my ideas. And at the NCPA, we know ideas can change the world.

Host outro: Tomorrow, we go to the top of Pete du Pont's reading list.