In response to my post about the estate tax, SciFiGeek left a comment saying that I'm a liberal:
So...Sigma, why aren't you a liberal? You've certainly pointed out many wonderful weakneses in the libertarian/conservative viewpoint, and I don't see you arguing how abortion's bad. Come on in, the water's fine!
All I did in the estate tax post was point out that we have a general rule that there should be a tax whenever money is transferred from one party to another, and the rule would work better if it were applied consistenly to all such transactions. If we arbitrarily exempt one transaction, such as transferring money by dying, then the rates on all the other transactions have to be higher in order to raise the same amount of total revenue. And higher rates lead to economically inefficient tax avoidance behavior.
Furthermore, it is inconsistent to tax gifts, but not gifts through death, which is basically the Republican plan. There is certainly no logic to that.
There is certainly something to the argument that a 55% tax rate for gifts is too high. Why not reduce the rate to the same rate paid for all other income which is currently at 35%? Yet strangely, the estate tax arguments seem to be all or none, and they focus only on estate tax and not gift tax.
I don't know why people who call themselves conservatives and libertarians don't see it the way I do. They have probably been victims of groupthink. All the other conservatives and libertarians say that the estate tax is bad so they just go along with it without giving it any independent thought.
I am not a liberal because liberals are ruled by guilt. This is why liberals seldom care much about the middle class. Liberals only want to help the poor. Liberals think that the middle class in the United States has it so much better than the rest of the world so that by helping the middle class they are increasing the inequality of the world. Liberals truly do hate America because they feel guilty about American being such a great country and they want to alleviate their guilt by ruining America.
I support policies to benefit the middle class. I recently wrote about NEST, a Manhattan school attended by gifted middle class students that liberals want to ruin because they hate the idea that the middle class who can't afford private schools might actually have a decent school for their gifted children.