Monday, September 28, 2015

Trump's tax plan

I keep hearing that Donald Trump isn't a serious candidate, that he's a joke, that he's too egotistical and bombastic, etc.

I'm not a fan of Trump, and I don't plan to vote for him. But I don't think he's a joke, and I think the tax plan he announced today deserves serious consideration.

Oh, I'm not convinced by his statements that his plan won't increase the debt — I'm always unimpressed by politicians who argue, essentially, that their policies are so brilliant that they'll lead to so much economic growth that we won't have to worry about fiscal responsibility. That strikes me as wishful thinking.

However, I commend Trump for breaking with the Republican orthodoxy that there must be no tax increases: Trump has admitted that some rich people's taxes will go up, including his, while most people's taxes will go down.

I'm also glad to see that he's not cowed by Republican attacks on those who don't pay any net federal taxes as freeloaders or moochers; he calls for eliminating income taxes for single people earning $25,000 or less and married couples jointly earning $50,000 or less.

And here's something else I'd like to know, especially if you're someone who writes off Trump as unserious or crazy or a joke: Why isn't Trump exactly right in what he says shortly after 12:30 in this video — that we've been losing a ridiculous amount of money by maintaining bases in other countries like Germany and Saudi Arabia, and it's time to renegotiate those deals? How does it make sense for us to provide security to a variety of countries around the world without getting paid back? Why isn't the status quo crazy? Why isn't the status quo a joke?