But it is necessary and I hereby declare myself a candidate for President.
My running mate is Brooks Hamilton; an innovative Dallas employee benefits attorney, 401(k) plan record keeper, and patriot.
As founders of the Dark Pony Party we share a single broad belief. While the Democratic candidate represents more government and the Republican candidate represents less government, neither party understands that the first wish of the American public has little to do with the amount of government.
Regardless of quantity, what we want most is an understandable and even-handed government. Today, we have neither.
So we offer these four planks:
An Integrated Tax System. While we have an income tax that appears to be progressive and that causes the top 1 percent to pay more than 30 percent of all income taxes, we also have a highly regressive employment tax. As long as we keep them as separate and unrelated taxes, both political parties will continue to make bogus and irrelevant claims about the real tax burden. They have been doing this for literal decades and we're sick of it. We propose that all workers be given a dollar for dollar income tax credit for each dollar of employment tax they pay.
This credit will work to eliminate the largest and most pervasive inequity in our tax system--- the fact that a family with moderate income can pay combined income and employment taxes at a higher effective rate than multi-millionaire families pay on incomes that are 10 and 20 times larger. Any politician, of any party, that does not deal with this is just wasting our time.
An Auto Pilot for Future Tax Cuts. Instead of wrangling over whether the surplus should be spent paying off the national debt or giving tax cuts, we propose that the two be linked so that declines in the national debt bring automatic income tax reductions. Similarly, we propose that increases in the national debt bring automatic increases in taxes. This will prevent current taxpayers from sticking future generations with unpaid bills.
Currently, net interest payments on government debt are about $224 billion a year while income tax collections are $997 billion a year. We propose a five- percent cut in income taxes for each $1 trillion reduction in government debt. If the debt can be paid off over the next ten years, income taxes could be cut by more than 25 percent--- and we would still have a federal surplus.
Normalized Congressional Benefits. We believe elected representatives should know what it feels like to live in the real world of uncertain employee benefits. To that end we propose a major change--- all existing benefit and pension plans for Representatives, Senators, and high level appointees will be terminated. This means that elected officials will no longer receive special pensions, extraordinary health care insurance, or other fringe benefits. Existing benefits will be replaced with benefits that represent the median level experienced by all workers. The benefits package will be revised each year so that elected representatives will be able to enjoy improvements in employee benefits when, and if, they occur.
Elected representatives who find the changes in benefits unacceptable will be offered buyouts that are equal to the median buyout offer American workers have received from large corporations that downsize.
Massive Simplification of Tax Deferred Savings Plans. We will replace the increasingly Byzantine system of confusing and rule-ridden qualified plans--- 401k, 403b, 457, IRAs, Roth IRAs, etc., etc.--- with a single simple plan with no limitations. Each American worker can create a Personal Capital Trust and make unlimited tax deferred contributions to that trust for as long as she wants. Once in the trust, earnings will be allowed to grow tax deferred. No taxes will be due, before or after death, unless withdrawals are made. All withdrawals will be taxed at capital gains tax rates.
The idea behind this plan is simple: money invested is money that is working for the common good. Its owner enjoys no benefit until money is withdrawn and spent. As long as money is invested it will not be taxed.
Realists, we know we're not even a dark horse. So we urge you to vote for us as Dark Ponies and let the geeks come to power.
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