.

The Fiscal Cliff – An Option C Solution

Conservatives should propose directed tax credits from the inevitable tax increase as a way to grow non-profits instead of government.

With America’s current polarized political situation, with both sides digging in their heels and not understanding each other and often misrepresenting each other to stay in power, it’s time to seek third option solutions that take the conflict off the table and give each group something of what they want. Or at least expose the hypocrisy if the stonewalling continues.

President Obama narrowly won re-election (<51% of the popular vote), and his party controls the Senate. Conservatives failed to overcome the media bias, which certainly swung public opinion a few points with low information voters. Many high information voters already had their minds made up and listened to their own sets of facts, ignoring the past failures of socialism in distant and recent history.

Conservatives did not make their case effectively enough for the country’s economic future, so there will be some sort of a tax increase on high achieving Americans.

Obama Holds the Trump Cards

The President continues to do what he knows best: divide and conquer, with endless campaigning at taxpayer expense. Class warfare works, as people of all income levels aspire to earn just a little bit more; some are jealous of those who earn more.

Others aspire to create wealth themselves or at least admire those who do, understanding that when “rich” people spend money on yachts, it provides jobs for working people who build them. Those who work with their minds are also working people.

Two Options for Republicans, or is there a third?

Agree to the tax increases, which even are larger than what Obama proposed last summer, or go over the fiscal cliff and be blamed for the economic chaos that ensues, with the assistance of the media. Hardly what conservatives who were elected to Congress desire to do. This is economic blackmail.

If conservatives agree to the tax increases, their constituents will be angry with them for selling out to anemic economic growth for decades to come. Once tax increases are installed on one segment of society, it will be hard to reform it.

If America goes over the fiscal cliff, the Democrats can always be the heroes and introduce bills to rescue middle and lower income Americans from the evil obstructionist Republicans. What Republican will be able to resist voting for a tax cut in today’s sound bite world where votes will be loudly replayed in the next election cycle?

Option C – Tax Credits for Designated Donations

A similar idea was proposed by Marvin Olasky of WORLD magazine several months ago. The House of Representatives should quickly pass a bill that takes some of these issues off the table. Allow an income tax rate increase for upper income Americans and small business owners who file as individuals, with the following as requirements.

  1. The entire tax increase can be offset by tax credits that allow people to designate charities for the funds to go to. Americans are a generous people and rise to the occasion whenever there is a need. This would allow growth of non-profit organizations, which are much more efficient at helping those in need than the government.
  2. Immediately defund Planned Parenthood and all other controversial federal domestic expenditures. It’s time the abortion industry was funded by ongoing operations and donations from those who support its objectives instead of all Americans by its supporters lobbying for tax funding.
  3. Direct the Justice Department to drop its lawsuits against those objecting to Obamacare on religious grounds.
  4. Justice should begin enforcing federal laws it disagrees with (federal marijuana laws, election laws, immigration laws, Defense of Marriage Act and the list goes on.) We are supposed to be a nation of laws, not of men. If Congress doesn’t repeal the laws, no administration has the right to ignore those it disputes.

 

Perhaps the last three items are too much to ask for in today’s Living Constitution environment. No doubt the Senate will strip them out in conference committee if Harry Reid even considers the bill, but at least the Democratic Party hypocrisy will be exposed.

America’s Social Compact is Coming Unraveled

North Korean Christians must sing silently for fear of being discovered, Chinese lawyers are jailed for defending house church Christians and other minorities like the Falun Gong, and Islamic countries persecute anyone for changing their religion (blasphemy against Islam, punishable by death in Islamic countries).

While religious freedom is not so egregiously violated here, America is facing a more subtle attack, a lessening of respect for those with minority views. Consider the following:

A Catholic friend told me he heard someone say “You can’t have any fun in Grand Rapids; there are too many Christians there.” Others at the table nodded in agreement. He no longer attends this discussion group, feeling that his values are being disrespected.

Freedom of religion or Freedom from religion?

The town of Frankenmuth is being sued by a secularist group (see “friendly atheist” link for details) for having its bicentennial cross (there since 1976) on public property.

Defended by the Thomas More Law Center (former Oakland County prosecutor Richard Thompson, who prosecuted assisted suicide "doctor" Jack Kevorkian), Frankenmuth rejected the demand October 8.

The costly battle to maintain an open forum for all religions (including atheism) continues. I'm glad the 5% "friendly (but militant) atheists" aren't intimidating the rest of us.

In God We Trust or in .gov we trust?

Callers to talk radio shows regularly dis people who object to Obamacare on religious grounds, saying they are just trying to avoid chipping in to what will benefit everyone. These callers don’t have a clue.

Yes, there really are some people who have moral objections to contraception, and many more to abortifacient drugs like RU-486 (Plan B) and the week after pill Ella. Many, many more object to forcing others to pay for things that go against their sincerely held moral or religious beliefs.

This week Hobby Lobby lost its appeal to the Supreme Court for an injunction against the Obamacare mandate while their case and more than forty others are under appeal. It could be forced to pay $1.5 million per day in fines for its 15,000 employees.

Negotiating Space for Conservatives

Contrary to what the left would have people believe, religious conservatives (who include Jews, Christians and people of other faiths) do not want a theocracy. When was the last time anyone was forced to go to church in America? We do not want the forced Islam of Iran or Saudi Arabia, nor the forced atheism of North Korea.

We just want to maintain the open forum for all religions (including atheism) America has always enjoyed. No religion should receive favor or suppression from the government.

Conclusion

Directing the inevitable tax hike towards designated tax credits will grow non-profits, not government, which is inherently less efficient and more removed from the people it tries to help.

Conservatives in Congress have one more ace they can play in the fiscal cliff negotiations. They should play it.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Dale Murrish December 28, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Unintended consequences? Or intended consequences? The government is proposing limiting the charitable deduction for wealthy people, who often give large amounts to organizations like the Salvation Army that help poor people. One large donor told Richard Stearns, president of World Vision USA, that his $1 million donation would become $650,000 if the government limited tax deductions for the wealthy. Read more at the link below. http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/12/27/as-fiscal-crisis-looms-taxing-charitable-gifts-by-rich-will-hurt-poor-most/ Americans donate more to private domestic charities than the combined budgets of federal departments of Agriculture (food stamps), Transportation, and Education. They donate more to overseas charities than U.S. government foreign aid. In bigger government we trust...
Rick Karlowski December 29, 2012 at 01:12 AM
How about we just freeze spending. You know, just not spend more this year then last (instead of this baseline budget nonsense).. The budget would be balance in a few short years.
Dale Murrish December 29, 2012 at 05:12 PM
Hobby Lobby will be defying the Obamacare mandate starting January 1, pilng up fines. Read this to hear the support they are getting from conservatives and the nasty comments from abortion advocates: http://radio.foxnews.com/toddstarnes/top-stories/hobby-lobby-to-defy-obamacare-mandate.html
Aviva January 02, 2013 at 10:08 PM
Ok, so we're defunding orgs that you are offended by. I want to jump in and call for us to defund the orgs that offend me, like the Boy Scouts. Let's stop the oppressive anti-homosexual culture pervasive in this government-funded organizations. Oooh. And as a non-Christian, I want to federally defund ANY and EVERY city that has religious displays on city grounds. It offends me. Oh, and while you're at it, defund ANY federal funding going to University researchers who work on erectile disfunction pills, because if you guys are going to legislate our uteruses, it's only fair that we legislate your penises. And tell me, Dale, are you ok with putting women who get screened for breast cancer and cervical cancer jeopardy by defunding Planned Parenthood? I have a friend who has no health insurance and no money, and Planned Parenthood is watching a lump on her breast. If they close, what should she do to determine if this is going to progress into cancer? Use a divining rod? Another person I knew went to Planned Parenthood to get checked for an STD after their partner cheated on them. What should she have done? Just wished really hard? Oh, and by the way, they were married (now divorced, of course). Please open your eyes to the reality of the situation.
Dale Murrish January 02, 2013 at 10:55 PM
I think you missed my point. I was advocating for the tax increases to be designated for charities. You could designate yours for PP (which gets about 5% of its funding from the government, while its main business is doing abortions). There are plenty of other places to get breast cancer and STD screenings. Pro-life women and men are not trying to legislate your uterus, just block the destruction of unborn children once sperm has connected with egg. If I could designate part of my tax money for the Boy Scouts, I’d be happy to. The Boy Scouts are a private organization that doesn’t get any government money and blocks openly gay people from belonging. They are not anti-homosexual (many gays are fine, creative, kind people), just don’t want to encourage gay sex, which they consider to be immoral. It’s common sense to not allow a gay man to be alone with boys in the woods. The Girl Scouts probably don’t let single men be alone with girls on a camping trip either. Some Girl and Boy Scout troops meet in government schools.
Dale Murrish January 02, 2013 at 10:56 PM
The Scouts were recently kicked off a military base where they had held a jamboree for years. Some wealthy Eagle Scouts got together and donated money for private land where the jamboree was held again. The Boy Scouts were defunded by the United Way in San Francisco in the mid-1980s and sought alternate funding through private donations rather than the more efficient United Way fundraising. The primary mission of the Boy Scouts is leadership and character development for young men and women (Explorer units), not killing babies, er fetuses. Big difference, in my opinion. I realize that people disagree about that and other things, so I proposed designated donations for the tax increase.
Dale Murrish January 02, 2013 at 10:57 PM
On the religious displays on public property, the Supreme Court has allowed nativity scenes on public land as long as there is at least one secular symbol. Some towns have a menorah and Christmas carolers singing in Old English costumes. Muslims can have a display at the time of their festival at the end of Ramadan, Hindus at Diwali, etc. Atheists can have their holiday displays, too, if enough people in the “friendly atheist” local community want it and the people vote for it. An open forum for all religions, including atheism and other non-Christian religions.
Wiley Coyote January 09, 2013 at 12:21 AM
Dale; You do love to hear your own voice. Do you realize that your original post was about 1,691 words (8,825 characters)? Then you proceeded to respond...to yourself...before anyone had even commented? You responded to yourself 5 times! You used 1,163 words (5,947 characters) to comment to yourself. Are you unable to express yourself in your original posts or are you incapable of editing yourself? You must know that talking (and writing) to yourself is really a sign of, well something unhealthy. For the sake of Patch readers out here, please do us a favor and find another pastime.
Dale Murrish January 09, 2013 at 10:41 PM
No opinion on content, just free psychoanalysis. You used many words to say very little. 2 of the 5 comments were responding to Aviva. The others were additional relevant information. What did you think of my main point? Would directed donations for the tax increase help to ease the divide our country faces? Yes, no, or more insults?
Mark Itall January 10, 2013 at 12:14 AM
Wiley, Back off! Dale is a disciple of Ronald Wolf. Post endlessly and repeatedly even if you are the only one posting.

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