By on February 3, 2015

Syracuse Road Construction - Utah DOT

President Barack Obama unveiled his annual budget Monday, which includes a proposition to tax corporate foreign earnings to fund the nation’s roads.

Vox reports the proposal would levy a one-time tax on 14 percent of foreign earnings held by U.S. corporations, pulling in $238 billion to help supplement taxes collected at the pump. The collected taxes would then be distributed into road infrastructure projects at a rate of $79.7 billion per year over the next six years, totalling $478 billion.

Meanwhile, Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Barbara Boxer of California have both offered a “repatriation holiday” to said corporations, giving the latter a tax rate of 6.75 percent over five years on foreign earnings brought back to the United States. The taxes would then go into those projects.

However, such holidays have been frowned upon by Obama over his two terms, warning that corporations would lobby Congress for more tax holidays; the Joint Committee on Taxation found such holidays would lose money over a decade despite the short-term gain.

Another option, proposed by Rep. John Delaney of Maryland, would tax corporate foreign earnings at a rate of 8.75 percent while ending deferrals. The bill would collect $170 billion to be spent on roads for six years.

Whatever happens, a decision would have to be made within the next few months. The U.S. Highway Trust Fund will go empty once again if nothing is done by May 31 of this year, forcing Congress to make do with the gas taxes collected. Since most people are driving less and using more fuel-efficient vehicles to get around these days, those taxes — which haven’t been raised above 18.4 cents/gallon since 1993 — fall short of the $50 billion per year needed for infrastructure; the current rate is of collection is $34 billion/year.

Two options have been proposed to fix the main issue — increase the gas tax and then pegging it to inflation, or expand drilling on federal lands and collecting the royalties — but neither option is popular among most in the Beltway.

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90 Comments on “Obama Budget Proposes Tax On Corporate Foreign Earnings For Roads...”


  • avatar

    No amount of taxation can save you from a spending problem.

    When you’re spending over $40,000 per second, you have a problem.

    • 0 avatar
      FractureCritical

      it’s not a spending problem, it’s a revenue problem.
      they’re trying to fund a growing system using the same non-adjusted gas tax that hasn’t been changed since 1993. You try living on what you made in 1993, then come back to us with how that turns out.

      If you want to gripe about government spending, you should start with how our military has no end of options for various munitions that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars each to strap under billion dollar aircraft that then go and blow up someone else’s bridges and roads.

      We as a country place far more value on destroying shit on the other side of the world than giving a shit about taking care of our own shit. it’s shitty.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        No, its a spending problem. Although you make good points about the absurd spending of the MIC.

        “Progressives say, if you’re so worried about the deficit, raise taxes! There are lots of rich people around, squandering money. On my show, David Callahan of the group Demos put it this way: “Wealthy Americans who have done so well in the past decade should help get us out.”

        But it’s a fantasy to imagine that raising taxes on the rich will solve our deficit problem. If the IRS grabbed 100 percent of income over $1 million, the take would be just $616 billion. That’s only a third of this year’s deficit. Our national debt would continue to explode.

        It’s the spending, stupid.”

        “Before 1963, when Reagan rode his horse, every single dollar after $400,000 (in today’s dollars) was taxed at more than 90 percent. And government revenues equaled about 18 percent of gross domestic product. Then the top rate was lowered to 70 percent, then to 50 percent, and then to as low as 30 percent, before it was raised back to 40 percent in the 1990s. Despite those sharp changes, the chart below shows that tax revenue seldom exceeded 20 percent or fell below 17 percent of GDP.”

        http://www.forbes.com/sites/danbigman/2012/04/03/john-stossel-tax-the-rich-the-rich-dont-have-enough-really/

    • 0 avatar
      caljn

      Ah lovely. Bumper sticker politics.
      Somewhere along the way Americans we sold on having it all and not paying for it.
      30 years of trickle down have come home to roost.

    • 0 avatar
      Jeff Waingrow

      A non sequitur, bigtruck. For an exceedingly bright guy, we expect more from you. At least I do. BTW, what is the ideal spending rate per second?

      • 0 avatar
        Chicago Dude

        But an actual number is obsolete the moment it is specified. What we need is an ideal spending rate per citizen per second. Or do we? Does it matter how many people live here? Should their age be a factor? Maybe we need a spending rate matrix that takes age and economic factors and health factors and maybe some other stuff into account. That would make the whole thing EASY, right?

  • avatar
    insalted42

    “Hey I have an idea! Why don’t we just tax people that DON’T use the roads, since we’re not getting enough from people that do.”

    –A Congressman, sometime in 2014 apparently

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Maybe someone should realise it isn’t the “road users” that only benefit from roads, or any publicly used infrastructure.

    I do believe if any increase in fuel tax it should also occur to those who believe they don’t use any road infrastructure.

    To a person who doesn’t own a car couldn’t survive without existing road infrastructure.

    Even if all used public transport and rode bicycles some form of road infrastructure is required.

    Who will pay then?

    Maybe the Federal or State can increase taxes on goods and services to reflect the use of this infrastructure. Even if you buy a can of beans at the supermarket it arrive there somehow.

  • avatar
    Brett Woods

    It’s about time that some influential representative of the people spoke up about the responsibility to collect monies needed to support roads, sewers, and later air and land amelioration. Tax collected for the heavy use of communal support structures and the environment paid for at an unbalanced rate by local tax payers.

    Free trade rules seem to be set up just to allow foreign industries to avoid paying even a too modest rate locally. The broad base of clean living low impact citizens pays for the fixing and clean-up of roads, rivers, and soil.

    More often, the usage is never ameliorated as the local coffers are empty when 1%’ers move on. Too many corporations leave behind grimy, crumbling, uninhabitable wastelands that linger in disrepair for generations.

    We are supposed to be thankful that once there were some jobs there.

    • 0 avatar
      shaker

      “More often, the usage is never ameliorated as the local coffers are empty when 1%’ers move on. Too many corporations leave behind grimy, crumbling, uninhabitable wastelands that linger in disrepair for generations.”

      They’ll lobby different states for the biggest tax forgiveness, then relocate there.

      Then, they’ll rely on the income tax paid by the workforce they hire to make up the difference (which never happens), but the optics for the corporation (and for the pols that ink the deal), are good.

    • 0 avatar
      Jeff Waingrow

      Agree, agree.

  • avatar
    Brett Woods

    *cough*

  • avatar
    an innocent man

    There is no such thing as a one-time tax.

  • avatar
    Brett Woods

    The excuse corporations give for not paying taxes where they work is that they give at home. And now congress wants to give them a “tax holiday.” Really? 6.75%? That just covers the paperwork, not the shovel work needed for maintenance. Mind you, the maintenance is needed at the work site. The current tax arrangement is to steal from local foreigners. This proposal is just to share the loot more equitably, so it could go through.

  • avatar
    Jeff Waingrow

    When I was growing up (a long time ago), it was the more philosophically conservative politicians who wanted to spend money on infrastructure to the exclusion of various social programs put forward by more liberal types. The mantra from the liberals was always that conservatives cared more about roads and bridges than about people. What an irony it is to now have the most conservative elements of you know which party in the vanguard of starving to death the means by which everything and everyone gets from here to there.

    • 0 avatar
      darkwing

      Or perhaps infrastructure spending has become so co-opted as to resemble just another social program, and thus unworthy of continued support.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        Remember the trillion dollar stimulus for shovel-ready projects? It wound up in a bunch of Soros’ ground game organizations’ coffers instead of fresh concrete. Maybe if we need better roads, nobody should be talking about high-speed rail. Rail is great for freight, but none of the treasonist’s rhetoric talks to optimizing our rail network for transportation of goods. He might have to admit that blocking pipeline construction is choking timely distribution of industrial products.

  • avatar
    hreardon

    I think that what Bigtruck is getting at is this: government is rapacious – there is never “enough” money for anything, and the cost of everything is exponentially more expensive than it needs to be. Everyone needs to get greased.

    If you ever needed a better example of this, look at how fast and how far SpaceX has come with the work on their Falcon rocket – especially with their return boost technology. Ten years, $20 billiion and NASA still doesn’t have a replacement for the STS program and won’t fly its own heavy lift until late 2017, and when it does it’s questionable if the operational costs will support more than 2x yearly flights.

    I am, of course, over simplifying and yes, I recognize that SpaceX is riding on a lot of the basic research into propulsion and aerodynamics that NASA has done over the last 50+ years.

    The same criticism of defense department spending and pork applies to infrastructure projects such as roads and bridges. Our government is getting worse, not better, about controlling costs and limiting pork.

    Final note: nothing infuriates me more than how the financial services industry was handled with kid gloves following the meltdown in 2008. Every bit of fiscal, monetary and legal policy related to those events has done nothing to fix the underlying causes of the crash and if anything, has masked it and rewarded bad behavior. If you ever wanted to see how bought-and-paid-for your government has become, study the financial crisis, its causes and the fallout from it. Would I like to see these guys pay their fair share? You’re darn right. But I’m also not foolish enough to think that this would be a “one time tax”.

    • 0 avatar
      Bill Wade

      Look at the Air Force and the F-35. A stunning example of government waste but in this case to the detriment of our security. What do they care, the taxpayer’s money is infinite, just ask DC.

      The Administration has proposed a 7% increase in spending. How many people are going to get a 7% raise? Eventually if taxes continue to increase faster than earnings the taxes will exceed 100% of all earnings or GDP for that matter. Sooner or later the politicians will have to reduce or freeze spending, it’s a mathematical certainty.

      Attempting to permanently fix anything with a “One time tax” is ludicrous. I predict if something like this passes even more companies will pull out of the US to reduce the rapacious tax exposure this country imposes on them. End result, the Treasury will be even worse off.

      • 0 avatar
        FractureCritical

        this is the reality of modern politics; solutions just have to last 4 more years. It’s a disaster at home, but look at abroad; we are miserable at nation building. It takes at least one full generation of committed ownership to build a nation. sometimes more. Round these parts, we just invade, patch the bullet holes, install some schmuck to run it, and then bug out. the USA is the home of house flipping, whether it be a moldy split level in Atlanta or a desert crap hole nation in the middle east.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          Part of the reason the F-35 costs so much, and why it simply can’t be replaced by the F-22, is that it is intended to be used by three services: Marines, Air Force and Navy.

          You can’t land F-22s on a carrier deck, so that rules it for the Navy and the Marines (who actually fly the F-18 off carriers). Also, if the F-35 isn’t built, then the Marines will have nothing but Harriers on their attack carriers, which are fine planes, but they’re antiquated, and they’re subsonic.

          Unfortunately, this is what happens when you try a one-size-fits-all solution – you end up with an expensive, compromised product. Reminds me of the F-111, which was developed for the Air Force and Navy, and never cut the mustard for either service (the Navy version was eventually heavily re-designed and re-tooled into the F-14).

      • 0 avatar
        an innocent man

        I was going to point out the F-35 too. Coincidentally, I think the price tag for that is about half a trill, just what they say we need for infrastructure. When some of us are a little bit opposed to new or higher taxes for infrastructure, it’s not that we oppose such spending, it’s that a lot of the money is already there, just wasted elsewhere.

        • 0 avatar
          hreardon

          Great points on the F-35 program. An unmitigated disaster that falls into every politician’s favorite category: the “we’ve sunk so much money into, it would be silly to pull the plug now” program.

          Think of politicians as children: they have no concept that mom and dad *don’t* have a limitless supply of cash.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            They pulled the plug on the F-22, even though it’s a better fighter than the F-35. The fly away price of the F-22 was going down and the DoD was upgrading them to F-35 level computer tech. The F-35 is a compromised and expensive boondoggle.

            The correct answer should have been this:

            More F-22s, more F/A-18 Es/Fs, keep the A-10s, and fill in the rest with drones. The idea that the F-35 can provide close air support like the sky cannon A-10 is insane. I’d rather have an AC-130 gunship providing CAS than an F-35. Maybe the Air Force will let the Marine Corps or Army have all the A-10s they don’t want.

            An aside: One of the most terrifying noises in the world is the sound of the A-10s 30 mm GAU-8 cannon firing. If you hear it, and you are not a US soldier, you are gonna have a bad day. If I was in ISIS, that noise, and the existince of the AC-130 (whose 105mm howitzer is more accurate than smart bombs), would keep me up at night.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            bbal, we lost the F22s stationed at the airbase near where I live. They were sent to MacDill.

            The new philosophy is to position the F22 all around the US, due to the reduced number of them, and rotate them to overseas areas on a rotating basis, like we rotate the Navy’s aircraft carriers.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            They are spread pretty thin at this point. I hate that we stopped production of a plane that has better survivability than one that we just spend even more money on. I’m not sure that the F-35 is a better plane than the F-15SE.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Right, bball, but you can’t fly an A-10 off a Marine carrier – they don’t take off vertically. That leaves the Marines with a bunch of antique Harriers.

            Unfortunately, I think we’re stuck with the F-35. Hopefully they can improve it, as the Navy did with the first-gen F-14s (which were awful).

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The Marines have land bases. I feel like they would make the A-10 work. It is such a good CAS weapon, maybe the best all time, that the USMC would figure out how to get those old birds to fly a few more years. The USMC already flies the F/A-18. I’m sure the Army would take them too, even if they aren’t supposed to have fixed wing attack aircraft.

  • avatar
    TW5

    This is rich. US companies can’t repatriate their profits because the US imposes onerous taxes from a bygone era, when Congress was terrified of US companies shifting their profits overseas.

    To make companies repatriate their profits to the US, the president proposes taxing their foreign earnings, rather than reforming corporate taxes. To get the average laystooge onboard, he proposes earmarking the tax revenues for a populist agenda: roads.

    This president is engendering a sort of economic fatalism from which we will be lucky to recover. He’s done nothing for the lower middle class, and he head hunts anyone with dollars to spare. Genuinely despicable little despot who’s become a national embarrassment as his party has thrown away their majority.

    If you don’t believe me now, wait until you see what sort of regulatory hassle and additional taxes are lying in wait for you this April 15th. A lot of parents are going to get burned for buying food and shelter for their 19+ dependents, rather than buying them health insurance. A lot of people who are out of work are going to get burned because they didn’t get permission from the government to have an economic hardship this year. Businesses that reimburse their employees for health insurance are going to be fined into bankruptcy. I’m not sure Obama understands the consequences of his actions. Millions of people are going to be apoplectic in about 60 days.

    • 0 avatar
      FractureCritical

      read a bit more on it. this is proposed as a tax holiday. those profits (at current rate) are taxed at 35%. If they bring them back to the US (which they want to do for a variety of reasons) they get hit for 14%.

      it’s supposed to be a smaller part of a larger tax overhaul that actually is intended to address your concerns.

      digest the facts first. bile usually just comes from empty stomachs ;)

      • 0 avatar
        TW5

        On an empty stomach or a full stomach, I can understand how politicians market their taxes to the public. Companies are moving their headquarters overseas to repatriate profits back into the United States. Anything more than 0% tax is just running up the score. Even Rand Paul can’t resist the urge to ding corporations for the privilege of investing after-tax funds in the United States, ostensibly because nearly every other developed nation on earth has lower corporate tax rates. As if that isn’t a problem we should address.

        This issue is much bigger than cliches and political buzzwords. We are dealing with the long term consequence of ill-conceived rules and tax concepts from a bygone era, particularly that any company trying to repatriate profits was attempting to dodge US taxes by earning profits overseas. The people who wrote those rules are dead, and the rules should have gone with them.

        Obama is not giving a pardon. He’s offering to take an arm, in exchange for letting corporations keep their heads. Holiday!

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    Lame duck Obama is crazy like a fox. He’s proposing things that he’s not going to get, that he knows he’s not going to get, thereby triggering the hysteric overreactions in the Republicans. By provoking the Republicans now, he’s opening up a channel for his successor.

  • avatar
    7402

    Infrastructure is key to a country’s economy, its citizen’s livelihood, and our national security. Eisenhower understood this–if you can’t move goods and people it’s much harder to get things done efficiently.

    Everybody benefits from the roads, not just drivers. We eat food that was moved over roads for at least the last leg if not the entire journey. We live and work in structures made of materials delivered over roads. The people whose work enables our consumption and survival get to work over roads.

    It does make sense to tax everyone for the roads, but this can be done indirectly through the unbelievably simple mechanism of taxing fuel at the pump because the total cost of that fuel gets factored into everything else. The gas-tax system requires that heavy users (either lots of miles, lots of weight, or both) pay the most and allows people to make personal vehicle choices that can reduce their tax.

    And gas taxes are simple to implement and simple to understand. Simple is good.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      “Everybody benefits from the roads, not just drivers.”

      “It does make sense to tax everyone for the roads, but this can be done indirectly through the unbelievably simple mechanism of taxing fuel at the pump because the total cost of that fuel gets factored into everything else.”

      How is this fair? I assume you mean that people who don’t drive will pay for the roads through the increased costs of goods passed to them by those who use the fuel to make and or transport those goods, but how about the guy who drives to work to buy those goods? He gets taxed twice, once at the pump and again when buying the higher cost goods

      • 0 avatar
        FractureCritical

        actually, the cost to maintain the roads is more than what is paid at the pump. So the guy driving to buy the goods is actually getting a subsidized trip on the gubbimint dime. so to speak.

        and there are other factors you’re not considering. Modern trucks are both more fuel efficient and more powerful. you’re already reaping the reduced cost of less truck drivers spending less for fuel to haul heavier cargo. Those heavier trucks are FAR more destructive to roads and bridges than they ever have been, and they’re paying less in road taxes to do it than ever before.

        you’re complaining about over taxation, but the real problem is that our lifestyles are so wildly subsidized with cheap fuel and ‘abandoned’ infrastructure, that you’re missing the coming disaster while you click the ‘free shipping with Amazon Prime’ button on your iPad while your 800 lb new fridge is being delivered.

    • 0 avatar
      heavy handle

      The problem with that idea is that the same people who think that fuel taxes should cover road repairs are fundamentally opposed to raising fuel taxes so that they can cover road repairs.

      This foreign earnings issue reminds me of something a coworker said last week: “Apple just declared the highest corporate profit in history. That’s really impressive when you consider that the company is run out of a post office box in Ireland!”

      • 0 avatar
        seth1065

        well to be fait it is a really really big PO box

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        @heavyhandle,
        It appears all recognise the need for road transport infrastructure construction and repair.

        But, like in most places it isn’t their responsibility to contribute more. This is the problem. It seems many are hard done by. Taxes are needed for a modern nation.

        People tend to vote for the political party that gives the most “freebees”. So, you’ll always have people crying that the grass is always greener in the neighbours yard and they should commit more.

        If you buy a car and you can only afford a V6 so be it. Even if you want a V8. This is currently the case with many in most nations globally. How many people want more?

        How about everyone working together? What I highlighted above is the political problem in the US. The left and right are playing on the emotions of the voters over what is really insignificant issues, like increase fuel tax 20c a gallon or something.

        Right now is the time to increase fuel tax in the US, whilst fuel is cheap.

    • 0 avatar
      Brett Woods

      Also commercial users pay gas tax out of their gross income while the non-commercial user pays out of net income.

  • avatar
    Lokki

    Arguments like this are one of the big reasons I stopped coming to TTAC some years back. True, it was the big blue dildo that pushed the button, but this just reminds me why I left.

  • avatar
    Dan

    But it’s for the roads, exactly the way every local tax is for the children, firefighters, and puppies.

    Funny how none of these taxes ever seem to be for the 4 million deadbeats who suddenly became “disabled” when the economy slowed down, or the 7 million who’d already figured out that scam earlier than that, or the 20 million deadbeats getting free Obama phones, 46 million deadbeats on food stamps, etc etc etc.

    • 0 avatar
      MPAVictoria

      Yeah, let those damn mooching 6 year olds starve. That’ll teach em.

      /You right wingers are cartoonishly evil.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Polite counterpoint: Why were those children born in the first place if their parents couldn’t take care of them?

        • 0 avatar
          MPAVictoria

          And its their fault for being born! So let’em starve.

          /Again CARTOONISHLY evil.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Much more sinister than that as it continues a cycle of irresponsibility. So nobody takes care of me because my parents were irresponsible, so gov’t steps in. Later as I grow up I am presented with choices whether I realize it or not, and those choices determine whether I break out of the cycle or perpetuate it. However since there are little to no consequences to my actions outside of serious crime, I can chose to perpetuate the cycle of my parents which is much easier than breaking free of it. Most will opt to continue the cycle. Over time the underclass grows and sucks up more and more resources from productive society. Eventually the underclass threatens it and you have serious chance of significant social upheaval if not societal collapse. There is a bigger picture you seem to be missing.

          • 0 avatar
            MPAVictoria

            Simple question: Should we, the richest country on earth, let kids starve? Yes or no please.

            /you are cartoonishly evil if you say yes.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Nice try. Should we (meaning the US) pay private bank interest on every bit of imaginary money created or instead divert a small portion of the savings to some sort of universal feeding?

          • 0 avatar
            MPAVictoria

            So no reply huh? Typical. And pathetic.

            I ask again, are you personally in favour of letting children die on the street from starvation in the richest country on earth? Yes or no.

          • 0 avatar
            danio3834

            Way to try and control the conversation to make it about what you want it to be. Cool false dilemma fallacy, bro.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            That’s not a valid question as you simply perpetuate the status quo. If handouts continue, what do you propose to change the situation? Seriously.

          • 0 avatar
            MPAVictoria

            So no response. Coward. Have some courage of your convictions. If you think poor children should starve say so. If not say that.

            What I want? Well how about we spend what Finland spends on reducing child poverty?

            http://www.demos.org/blog/1/7/15/child-welfare-programs-finland

            http://www.demos.org/blog/1/12/15/poorest-norwegian-children-are-twice-rich-poorest-american-children

            http://www.demos.org/blog/1/5/15/when-it-better-not-be-america

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I’m going to check out your links because why not maybe there’s a good idea in there but both extremes of (1) give them everything and (2) let them starve are cruel and ultimately do not solve the problem. Contributing to the demise of your own civilization by writing a check and ignoring the problem is just as cowardice as cutting off the food supply.

          • 0 avatar
            hreardon

            Anyone ever see the movie “Idiocracy”?

            Of course it’s not black and white. Few would argue we should let large swaths of the populace starve to death but we don’t want to create a subclass of people who are completely dependent upon government largess.

            Look, I’ve seen the corruption first hand having worked for years in social service. Yes, the stories of welfare queens driving Escalades is all too true. No, it’s not everyone, but the numbers are far greater than you think and what’s more frustrating is the sense of entitlement that many of these people bring to the table. This is the primary reason I’ve left the social service world: I grew tired of raising money to help people who had no interest in breaking out of the cycle, they were perfectly content going about their day knowing that someone else was picking up the bill.

            What we forget in the US is that in countries like Norway, Findand and Sweden there is a very strong sense of right and wrong, and a very strong sense that if you are living on the public dole it is shameful. Ergo, a large percentage of those on government assistance get off of it as quickly as possible to avoid the public stigma. It’s a very different mentality in Scandanavia, where public assistance is considered a recognition that everyone falls upon hard times and sometimes need a hand up. It’s also an area where the birthrate is virtually negative.

          • 0 avatar
            an innocent man

            MPA, I wish I knew where you were from, so I’d know to never visit. Cause that must be a terrible place filled with awful people if you could look at a starving child and the ONLY two outcomes you can see are:

            1) Child dies
            2) Government feeds child

            Where I come from, no child would ever starve, regardless of government help. In our community, we help each other. If your house catches fire in the middle of the night, a volunteer firefighter, that you may have never met, will be there in minutes. This happened recently close by me, to a family new to the area. They lost everything. Within HOURS, there was a Facebook page where people were taking donated toys and things for the children. There was a Gofundme page for money donations. The PTO held a dance fundraiser.
            Our schools and churches are constantly having food drives, there is a large Food Bank run mostly by volunteers.Soccer,basketball,swim leagues, all run by volunteers. We have Meals-on-wheels to get regular cooked meals to Seniors. I have several friends that raise Service Dogs for an organization (that takes ZERO government funding) that trains them for children and adults that require that assistance.
            What an awful place you must live if you were raised in an environment where you see a starving child and say, “That’s not on me.”

          • 0 avatar
            danio3834

            “MPA, I wish I knew where you were from, so I’d know to never visit.”

            Ontario, where else? The poster child for disastrous governance and out of control spending.

            MPA could very well be an advisor to the Premier who is a member of a party that thinks the only possible two outcomes for any problem are:

            1. 100% government control of said issue.
            2. Everyone dies.

            If anyone doesn’t go along with it:

            1. Say they hate children.
            2. Call them cowards for not engaging their fallacious reasoning.

            It’s all in the play book.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            You guys on both side of the issue are a little scary, good thing both scenarios are fantasy. The real world is somewhere in the middle

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          Because you can’t stop people from [email protected], and we don’t have government mandated abortions in the United States?

          • 0 avatar
            Mr. Orange

            Are you sure? I heard about some stuff involving FEMA.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Ultimately such a thing becomes a eugenics argument, and throughout the last hundred and twenty years we’ve seen how well this worked out.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I’ve actually had good experiences with FEMA (and the SBA who administers some disaster aid). I’m guessing that they have learned a lot since Katrina. Based one my experience, if someone lives in an area that has been declared a disaster by FEMA, and they did not receive some sort of compensation, they are beyond help.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            “Because you can’t stop people from [email protected]

            um…

            Fornication
            Under
            Consent of the
            King

            I think it was a failed policy

          • 0 avatar
            shaker

            If we had decent-paying jobs that were an improvement on welfare, maybe those slackers might see the value of work.

            And [email protected] is less likely among a tired workforce.

    • 0 avatar
      Mr. Orange

      You are aware that the “Obama phone” has nothing to do with Obama other than being a tool of propagandists to excite people with misinformation to effect their political viewpoints and thereby their political actions.

      The Lifeline Assistance program (called the Obama Phone) was originally part of a bill signed into law by Reagan in 1984. Then expanded by Clinton and then Bush Jr. in 1996 and then 2008. Obama has not signed a piece of legislation creating or paying for this program.

      Another funny fact the government doesn’t directly pay for it. The program is sustained by fees paid by telecom companies.

      I’ve gotten sick of having to seeing those dang commercials.

  • avatar
    calgarytek

    I believe the answer to this is not to ‘subsidize’ roads, but rather move to a pay per use model. Across the country. Taxes are way too ‘political’.

    This is esp. critical in urban areas where the costs of maintaining/renewing/upgrading infrastructure are much more significant then maintaining a road in some rural area.

    • 0 avatar
      seth1065

      be careful what you wish for a lot of stuff gets moved from the parts in LA and NY to middle america , how do you plan on keeping the bridge that connects two area in the middle of nowhere going, not important to many but very important to the folks on each side.

  • avatar
    Mr. Orange

    Since these American corporations are legally people. And all persons who are American citizens or residents have to pay taxes on foreign income. Makes since that American corporations should pay their taxes. Seems simple enough.

    And since these large sums of money are just sitting overseas doing next to nothing about time we did something useful with them. Americans need money for roads. These massive corporations want to repatriate their cash. Time to make a deal.

  • avatar
    seth1065

    Ok I am not sure how the math works so let me see if I got this correct, everyone agrees our roads are crap, according to this Vox story the tax would bring in 238 billion to help pay for roads, roughly 80 billion a year for 76 years , totaling 478 billion, where did the extra 200 Billion come from????
    Later in this story it says the it says we need 50 Billion per year needed for infrastructure and we collect 34 billion a year.. OK if it 50 billion and we collect 34 billion we are 16 billion short but in theory this tax will collect and distribute 80 billion a year or 30 billion more than we need not using any of the gas tax we collect now????
    I am sure all this so called found money will be spent on roads, so does that mean the tolls in metro NYC will not go up anymore, nope toll hikes planned for the next 5 years The numbers here do not add up at all, does not matter which side you vote for they are both FUBR. TAX TAX TAX Spend spend spend
    It seems the gov’t wants to run the country with a 8 year note on a new lexus they can not afford with nothing down.

  • avatar
    slance66

    We are the only country in the western world that attempts to tax foreign earnings at all. Trillions sit overseas and can’t be reinvested by American companies. It is the single stupidest economic policy we have, the holiday isn’t low enough. A permanent rate of zero (which isn’t zero as these earnings were taxed in the countries in which they were earned already) is needed. Job growth in the USA would skyrocket, increasing income tax receipts by the government.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I can see the idea of the tax holiday working. Have one every ten years or so when you need a bunch of money, and get the companies earning overseas to pull all that money back in.

    My company isn’t pulling ours back in because of the punitive taxes. We invest in other countries which are not America, and let the money sit there, relatively unused.

    But just levying a tax on it when it isn’t even brought back to the US yet is nonsense.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    Wadeaminnit! I thought the “stimulus” package that busted the budget and the deficit was supposed to be for “shovel-ready” infrastructure projects?

    Originally, the gas tax and the Federal Highway Trust Fund was intended to be the funding mechanism for highway construction.

    Then, at some point, large chunks of that money started being used to fund mass transit. Indeed, our lovely metro DC subway system was one of the leading beneficiaries.

    Then it started being used to fund bicycle projects.

    And, no, I’m not buying the too-clever-by-half argument that these projects benefit highway users because it “keeps people out of cars.” By that logic, airline passengers and railroad passengers (what few there are) should get these benefits, too. After all, if I take a train or fly to New York, I’m not on the road in a car.

    Personally, I would be happy to support a gas tax increase. I agree with the point that, on an inflation-adjusted basis, the federal tax has been reduced over the years. But I would have two provisos: (1) the federal highway trust fund should return to being used exclusively for highway projects and (2) the Davis-Bacon Act requirement that only union labor be used, regardless of price, be rescinded.

    Is it really fair that people in, say, Oklahoma, are paying gas tax so I can ride in my city’s subway system and meanwhile, their highways are full of chuckholes. I can testify to the fact that the right lane of I-40 in Oklahoma is so beat up from trucks that everyone avoids driving in it whenever they can.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      A trillion dollars should have gone a long way to cover an annual shortfall of 16 billion dollars, but all it bought were some Stalinist-Russia-reminiscent road signs. Obama’s followers are ready to be Grubered by the same argument again.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      The federal gas tax was introduced by the Hoover administration in order to reduce the federal deficit. Nothing to do with roads.

    • 0 avatar
      seth1065

      +!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This was for DC bruce comments makes sense to me, I would pay more if I had any faith the money would go towards roads only, with no must be Union no ifs no buts

    • 0 avatar
      TW5

      It’s a nice compromise and sensible policy, but it doesn’t address the fundamental issue. Gasoline tax revenue is not closely correlated to road usage. As vehicles become more efficient, and we use other sources of energy, the problem will become more acute.

      Gasoline excise only makes sense for states because they don’t have other good options for funding their major highways and thoroughfares used by out of staters.

  • avatar
    JD321

    To the left-wing parasite monkey-children, more is never enough.

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