Gov. Christie and legislative leaders are at impasse. They could not agree on a package of tax cuts and a hike in the “gas tax”, a user fee, (which is the only “fair” way to fund roads and bridges in today’s political environment) provide tax relief for the people of New Jersey and fund the depleted Transportation Trust Fund. The governor has ordered transportation projects halted as of today even though there appears to be enough money to fund projects until August 1.
Rather than go over all the details in the Sarlo-Oroho compromise that appeared to have enough bipartisan support to pass both houses of the legislature with enough votes to override Gov. Christie’s veto, the governor at the last moment calls for a 1% drop in the sales tax to 6% in the name of “tax fairness”.
If Gov. Christie wants more “tax fairness” in New Jersey, he should reduce all taxes for individuals and businesses. All taxes are unfair because they are coerced from the people who earned the income being taxed in the first place. In other words, all taxes should be cut, anytime not only for “fairness” but also to provide more of the resources people and businesses need to achieve their goals in life.
In today’s political culture, the state’s needs override the people’s freedom to keep more of their own money. This is known as the “fallacy of the public sector“, which the late economics professor, historian and philosopher Murray Rothbard wrote about several decades ago. There is only one way to know exactly what the people want and that is to have a vibrant market economy. In a market economy, people choose freely what they want and what they do not want. This is real democracy. In government, “democracy” means having elections so that legislators, governors or presidents can expropriate money from the general public to benefit every special interest that clamors for more of the neighbors’ money.
In other words, democracy is a polite term for massive theft.
Given the political reality in Trenton, the governor and legislative leaders should hammer out the following proposal that would provide the funds needed for our deteriorating infrastructure and reduce the unconscionable tax burden on the people of New Jersey.
- Phase in the gas tax over the next 24 months
- Eliminate project labor agreements or any other regulation that increases the cost of construction in New Jersey
- Increase the cap on exempting retirement income to at least $100,000
- Phase out the estate tax over the next 3 to 4 years
- Abolish the inheritance tax immediately
- Cut at least 5% from the $34.5 billion budget Gov. Christie just signed
- Eliminate regulations that are costing small businesses thousands of dollars each year to comply with
- Reduce the corporate business tax to make New Jersey more attractive for all businesses
These proposals would fund the Transportation Trust Fund and give New Jerseyans much needed tax relief, and make New Jersey more attractive for businesses to stay here and move into the Garden State.