Posted 10 years ago on Nov. 16, 2011, 6:47 p.m. EST by dkelvin
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
It's often said that Occupy Wall Street doesn't have concrete goals or direction. I'd like to offer one solution: Let's focus on pressuring the "Super Committee" in Congress to raise tax revenue by simplifying the US tax code and eliminating exemptions and loopholes that benefit the wealthy. A simpler tax code with no loopholes would do the following: (1) raise US tax revenue and allow us to reduce the national deficit without relying solely on cutting government programs such as social security, Medicare and Medicaid, (2) decrease the size and cost of running the IRS, (3) make it easier for ordinary Americans to understand and file taxes. This goal - pressuring the "Super Committee" to simplify our tax code by eliminating loopholes and deductions - is concrete and aligned with Occupy Wall Street Movement. There are only two ways to reduce our national deficit - cut government spending or raise tax revenue. If we only cut government spending without raising tax revenues, the safety nets of social security, Medicare and Medicaid will be hit hard, which would only increase inequality in the US. This is why higher tax revenues are essential and must be included in the Super Committee's deficit reduction package. One potential solution is to raise the top tax rates on the rich to increase total tax revenue; however, this is not the best plan. The best way to achieve the same objective is to simplify the tax code. If we eliminate the loopholes that wealthy Americans use to significantly reduce their taxes, we'll be "killing two birds with one stone" - we'll both raise revenues and reduce the massive and inefficient bureaucracy that is the IRS. The 6 Republicans on the "Super Committee" who have refused to raise tax rates are only looking out for the wealthy in this country, and they must be pressured to reverse course. The committee has until next Wednesday, November 23, to come up with a package that will reduce our national deficit by at least $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years. Let's spend the next week making signs, calling members of Congress and pressuring the committee in any peaceful way possible to simplify our tax code by eliminating loopholes that benefit the rich. It's a concrete goal, and it will make our country a better place.