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PAYING TWICE

by Ed Henry Wednesday, Oct. 01, 2003 at 9:49 AM

PAYING TWICE, PEOPLE LOVE DOUBLE TAXATION

Pretty soon we'll be able to pay for our groceries at the super and then when we cart them home there will be someone there to make sure we pay for them again. Won't that be nice? It should fit right in with the taxes we are already paying twice.

And President Bush can conduct fundraisers all over the country where it costs 0 to ,000 to get in and another 0 to ,000 to get out. All this is consistent with what the government is doing now, the double taxation rip-off.

For example....

Every employer in the country pays unemployment taxes. When people are laid off, fired, get a pink slip, or are simply downsized, they have the right to draw unemployment for at least six months while looking for another job. That's what the tax is for, and that's the way it's supposed to work.

Unemployment compensation is an entitlement. Workers are "entitled" to draw temporary unemployment benefits because those benefits have been paid in advance by their employers. The money is supposed to be there, invested and growing, but waiting to be used in hard times. At least, that's the way it's supposed to work.

In the good times, in the days when the country had minimal unemployment, employers were contributing more than was necessary. They were sending the government a surplus. They were contributing more than was required to pay benefits to the unemployed.

In those good times, the government could have at least temporarily reduced unemployment taxes or they could have left it alone and invested the surplus just like they invest their own money in the Thrift Savings Plan for federal employees. An investment system, managed by Barclay Bank of Great Britain, which has produced as much as a 28 percent return on investment and last year, during a sour economy, still managed to produce a 17 percent return for our happy participating representative federal government people.

Had the government invested former unemployment surplus contributions, or allowed Barclay Bank to invest it just as they have the bureaucrat's own money, these surpluses would likewise have grown.

But alas, that's not what happens. Instead, our crafty politicians and bureaucrats have devised a scam that makes Enron, WorldCom, Arthur Andersen, and other private sector crooks look like children playing in a sand box. They pretend to "borrow" the surplus.

Despite the fact that it is physically impossible to both spend and save the same money, our federal government, the people who work for us, actually want you to believe that's exactly what they do. It's that flagrant. Here's the way it works.

First, they take the surplus money and spend it. Poof, it's gone, never to be seen again. For our purposes here, it doesn't matter what they spent it on. It could have been spent on war. It could have been spent to keep lobbyists happy. It might even have been spent on something worthy or good for you. No matter what, it's gone.

Here's the despicable part.

Without contract, without so much as the slightest permission from the so-called lenders, the con artists deposit "special obligation" nonmarketable Treasury bonds in an equally phony trust fund dollar-for-dollar for the money stolen, the money that they are pretending to borrow and have already spent.

They often call these "IOUs" but they are more properly UOUs because there is no one who can redeem them, pay off this debt, except the taxpayer.

Don't let the language fool you. These are debt markers deposited in a debit black hole account that is part and parcel of the national debt. They are in a category of phony trust funds deliberately mislabeled as "Intragovernmental Holdings" to make you believe that the government owes itself or one governmental department owes another.

In reality, with any entitlement where taxpayers contribute a surplus—we are buying debt. It's the same as walking into the U.S. Treasury, plunking down a fistful of money, and saying: "Here, give me some debt so I can pay again later, plus interest."

Currently, as of the end of August, 2003, there is .8 trillion worth of these bogus bonds accounting for 42 percent of the national debt. Most of these (92 percent of them) are tied up in 19 different entitlement accounts, Social Security being the largest.

The other eight percent are perks for government. A subject in itself.

The entire "Intragovernmental Holdings" section of the national debt, .8 trillion of the national debt, could be eliminated tomorrow and no one would suffer except the Beltway Bandits.

I suppose we should be thankful that it's only the smaller accounts that are being drawn down today. When the big ones, like Social Security, require their bogus holdings, the taxpayers of this country will be in deep doo-doo.

Here's what has been happening this year, right now, as you read this:

Source: U.S. Treasury Monthly Reports

As you can see, there has been a total withdrawal of billion in debt markers from the Unemployment Trust Fund so far this year. And where did the deficit (in red) money to pay benefits to the unemployed come from?

It came from the Treasury's general fund of current taxpayer dollars on hand or money borrowed from investors. Either way, you paid for it. You paid the same tax employers paid previously, plus you also paid interest on any debt markers that had been sitting there for more than a year.

If this billion wasn't borrowed legitimately from investors, raising the national debt and putting the burden to repay it on the shoulders of our children and grandchildren, then it came right out of money that should have gone for education, agriculture, housing, health care, or any and all elements of budgeted discretionary spending—your current income tax contributions.

Given the huge increase to the national debt this year, the real deficit, you can be pretty sure it came from honest contractual borrowing from investors, both foreign and domestic. The people who stole this money in the first place now borrowed from foreign and domestic investors in order to pay it again. It's all on your tab.

What's more, during the two months when "receipts" were higher than "outlays" the bandits got some more loot to feed their spending habit. Of course, a sizable chunk of this was interest paid in May. Interest against last year's holdings. Interest that was paid by simply handing the phony trust more phony bonds in order to continue the "borrowing" fraud.

Why don't you try this with your home mortgage? That mortgage is probably being held by the federal government anyway. Your local bank or banking conglomerate probably sold it to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mack, or Sally Mae who are government businesses and your bank is now just acting as their agent.

Spend the premium money on yourselves and the kids, then print up some pretty "Joe Six-Pack Bonds" and send them to the bank. Tell them to stuff them in a trust fund for awhile or at least until they've got the money to redeem them. See how far you get.

Of course, no ordinary citizen has the power to carry this off. No matter how authentic your "Joe Six-Pack Bonds" look, in no time the sheriff is going to be coming to your house to evict you.

But when the federal government does it, you love it. If it were criminal, the millionaire talking heads of television would be all over it like flies on a road apple, right? People like Wolf Blitzer, Paula Zahn, Ted Koppel, and all of the other high paid monitor readers would be protecting you, wouldn't they? (If Katie Curric makes million a year, what do you suppose the really big guns are paid?)

And don't forget to watch the New York Stock Exchange and the bond market so you can tell how well things are going for these millionaires. These are sure signs that you must be doing better too, right?

The real problem comes back to the people. It rests squarely on the shoulders of working Americans who do nothing about it and actually go out and vote for more of the same because there isn't one candidate from either party that addresses this injustice. There's only one conclusion that can be drawn from such behavior. The people must enjoy being screwed.

"Published originally at EtherZone.com : republication allowed with this notice and hyperlink intact."

SEPARATE COMMENT: SUCKERS, YOU DUMB AMERICAN SUCKERS taxing yourself out of existence, and when you job goes overseas maybe, just maybe you will wake up.

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