Raising Taxes

Alyssa, staff

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Probably the number one highest point of economic contention between the major political groups in the United States is the amount of money taken up in taxes. Should we make more tax cuts or more spending cuts? Should we implement a flat tax? A progressive tax? Should we socialize certain parts of government or promote complete individualism? Where should the disabled receive the means to live?

I will be exploring the benefits of raising taxes and the philosophies that support that idea.

Number One. Raising Taxes Can Benefit the Needy.
Around 2010, nineteen percent of American citizens of workable age were registered disabled and about twenty percent were registered for some type of welfare. Of course, some of these people may actually be able to work and stealing benefits, but the issue is that nearly half of the entire country would not be able to come up with even $400 in the case of an emergency. Ninety seven percent of all welfare money per family is actually spent on the basic necessities of everyday life.
Welfare can only provide an average of about $124 per week for a family of about three or four, and this is if the primary provider of the family can also work about thirty hours per week as a preliminary requirement to be granted money. Many Americans are living on a very small sum of money. The percent of impoverished Americans is about fifteen percent as of 2012.

Number Two. Public Transit.
Here in America we are very very behind in the transportation momentum. We do have more cars per person than nearly any other country in the world; however, what we lack is a good public transportation system. Public transportation uses much less of the fossil fuels we are working so hard to conserve because the amount used per person in transport is much less than that of a car. Also, deaths are much more frequent in cars than say, trains. Odds of dying in a train crash are about 1 in 500,000 while death by a personal motor vehicle is only 1 in 8,000. Areas with higher tax rates in Europe are developing much quicker in this field than the United States.

Number Three. Health Programs.
In the United States, most of the middle and upper class understand the value of having health insurance. If, for some reason, an illness is untreatable by conventional means, one must visit a doctor to receive treatments and possibly a hospital later on. Over only one eight week period, for example, one chemotherapy treatment for a cancer patient averages around $30,000. This is something most normal people with steady incomes simply cannot afford to pay. Therefore, for the percent who need that sort of assistance, taxes step in. With healthcare programs like Medicaid and Medicare, even people who cannot access other means of healthcare can receive access to treatments that may be life-saving or life-changing.

While this is only a surface-level explanation of three benefits of higher taxes, sometimes just talking about it breaks the stigma of how Americans think of money. A lot of us are prone to thinking having money in bountiful supply is the most important thing the American life can offer. However, the American life is about more than making bank. It’s about altruism and equality.

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Raising Taxes