What do Tax Cuts Cost?

I’m a bit tired of reading about the prohibitive cost of tax cuts. The “cost” of a tax cut is a backwards and wrong expression. A tax cut doesn’t have an assignable cost, unless you can count your chickens before they hatch.

Taxes are by nature a forced confiscation of private property, though they are necessary to pay public bills. The nature of taxes means that their very existence is a drain upon the economy. Hence, for a better economy, and an economical benefit that could be enjoyed by all, taxes should be minimized.

When a politician speaks about the “cost” of a tax cut, he assumes the revenue of a particular tax to be already at his disposal, even before the tax has been collected. He also assumes that any negative economic influence of imposing the tax will be unworthy of consideration as a “cost.” On the first assumption, he is plain wrong. On the second, he is irresponsible.

The idea that uncollected, future taxes are already at the disposal of our legislature is exactly the same as the idea that a private citizen’s credit card limits are an asset just like his savings account.

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