Warren’s Wealth Tax Is Trojan Horse for Socialism

March 3, 2021 Updated: March 5, 2021

Commentary

Like most socialists, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) is enamored with class warfare and wealth redistribution. Her political career has been predicated on vilifying productive Americans while nurturing a sense of victimhood among the unproductive.

Although Warren’s socialist streak probably prevented her from becoming her party’s 2020 presidential nominee, she’s not backing down. In fact, she’s doubling down.

On March 1, Warren reintroduced her Ultra-Millionaire Tax, which would impose a “2% annual tax on the net worth of households and trusts between $50 million and $1 billion” and a “1% annual surtax (3% tax overall) on the net worth of households and trusts above $1 billion.”

According to Warren, “This is a wealth tax that has been needed for a long time. We need it to produce more revenue, to create more opportunity in America.”

This is deceitful.

First, governments don’t need more revenue. In FY 2020, revenue to the federal, state, and local governments totaled $7 trillion. The federal government alone collected $3.4 trillion in revenue. How much more revenue could government possibly need? In Warren’s mind, more.

Second, since when does the federal government create opportunity? Short answer: Never. That’s part and parcel of the private sector. Unless, of course, you’re a socialist.

In Warren’s eyes, the government’s modus operandi isn’t to create a level playing field in which there’s equal opportunity for all. Rather, the government should determine equal outcomes.

And to ensure that the government has the capacity to achieve equal outcomes, Warren wants to empower everyone’s least-favorite government department: The Internal Revenue Service.

To do this, Warren’s bill includes:

  • “A $100 billion investment to rebuild and strengthen the IRS, ensuring the agency has the resources to hire and train additional personnel, modernize IT systems, and implement the new asset valuation, reporting, and enforcement requirements for the Ultra-Millionaire Tax”
  • “A 30% minimum audit rate for taxpayers subject to the Ultra-Millionaire Tax”
  • “A 40% ‘exit tax’ on the net worth above $50 million of any U.S. citizen who renounces their citizenship in order to escape paying their fair share in taxes

Judging by the pernicious penalties for those who would rather leave the United States than be subject to an unconstitutional, un-American wealth tax, one can’t help but wonder if Warren’s wealth tax is also intended to instill fear and acquiescence.

In reality, Warren’s wealth tax is the next logical step in the road to socialism.

The United States already has a progressive income tax. According to the most recent available tax data, “The top 1 percent paid a greater share of individual income taxes (37.3 percent) than the bottom 90 percent combined (30.5 percent).”

The United States also incorporates wealth redistribution on a massive scale. From free health care to free groceries to free housing, the federal government is well on its way to becoming the ultra-nanny state of Warren’s dreams.

In the second quarter of 2020, federal government transfer payments reached an all-time high of $4.8 trillion. During the COVID-19 pandemic, social benefits have exploded. Warren and others believe this is a good thing. It’s not.

Warren would like you to believe the wealthy don’t pay their fair share and that those on the lower rungs of the economic ladder have little shot at achieving the American dream. Neither of those is true.

The United States has been the land of opportunity since its founding. However, this isn’t destined to remain the case.

As Ronald Reagan said, “Freedom is a fragile thing and it’s never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by way of inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people.”

Warren’s odious wealth tax, if implemented, would undermine Americans’ freedom while putting the United States further down the dark road to socialism.

Chris Talgo is an editor at The Heartland Institute.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.