Senate Democrats have rejected repealing the death tax.
Look, rich people don’t pay estate taxes. They have lawyers to fix things for them so they won’t have to. Any really rich people who think the government should take their estates are free to sign them over to the Treasury Department in their wills.
And you can count the number of those wills on the fingers of one slide projector.
Estate taxes usually hit middle class families with equity. They might be rich on paper — a nice house or a small business — but not in real income. I don’t care what the family farm is worth to an accountant, but a person who has never seen a six-figure income (much less seven) is not fucking rich.
And yet old homes, old farms, and young businesses get sold off every day so that bereaved families might pay the tax man his due.
Not only is that sort of confiscation just plain wrong, but an MBA might call the process “reverse capital formation.”
Capital isn’t just money; it’s also stuff. Tractors, automated factories, home improvements, your car — they’re all capital. The more that capital accumulates, the richer we all become. We might not see it in cold hard cash, but we can feel it in a higher living standard or fewer hours spent at backbreaking labor.
The death tax works against those long-term improvements to our nation’s well-being.
And Tom Daschle likes it that way.