Oh, and Cain? We Like You, But You Can Take Your “9-9-9” and Shove it

(h/t S.Weasel).

Listen, people, if there is one thing that this nation doesn’t need, it’s a federal income AND a federal sales tax. Stoaty gives an excellent example of why not in the article linked in the hat tip.

In 1962, Denmark came up with a 9% (where’d we see that number before?) VAT. By 1992 it was up to 25%. Yes, as in “TWENTY-FUCKING-FIVE PERCENT.”

You can say that a VAT and a sales tax are two completely different animals, but it doesn’t make a lick of difference to our wallet what you call it. It’s the same thing in the end.

What makes it even worse is that it’s one of those “invisible” taxes. We know that we’re not alone in bemoaning automatic payroll withholdings as tax payers would become a lot more critical of taxation levels if they had to personally cut a check every two weeks. Now take that and multiply by 10 and you’ve got the stealthiness of a VAT/sales tax.

And you know, or should know, as well as we do that if you ever present a government with a stealthy way of raping your wallet, they’ll abuse it until you’re left with nothing but a meager allowance.

And this in addition to a “flat” income tax on individuals?

Oh boy, talk about handing the fox the keys to the hen house.

Don’t believe us?

In our native country, 9-9-9 became 50-50-25 in three decades.

Your plan needs some work, doofus, because we’re not going there again.

Besides, this whole “Taxed Enough Already” movement is about cutting spending, not about finding new and ingenious ways of raping a population already bent over the barrel. You may want to go check your Cliff Notes again.



  1. 1
    Mao's Dog growls and barks:

    I have been waiting for a vat tax for some time.

    I think it’s a GOOD thing.


    Instant grey markets spring up all over the country. People doing business and trade directly with each other outside the system. This builds communities and support structures that we need in case the economy gets much worse.

    I think a VAT Tax would ultimately weaken the government and actually bring in less tax revenues for them.


  2. 2

    Mao’s Dog: Agreed. And, Sire, it doesn’t make a fig what kind of tax system there is. Unless the people that screw with the numbers are held sharply to account, they’ll find a way to fuck it up for those they “represent”.

    Herman Cain explained how it’s SUPPOSED to gonna work over at his WND column.

  3. 3
    LC Random Numbers growls and barks:

    I would accept the idea if there were some way to lock all three rates together so that if one is raised or lowered, all must be raised or lowered at the same time. Let’s see the Dems try to raise a known tax on everyone to payoff their friends.

    If we had a parliamentary system, like you fled, Emperor, I would reject the whole notion.

  4. 4
    angrywebmaster growls and barks:

    I like Cain and think the 9-9-9 plan is a good starting point. It gives us something to actually look at and discuss instead of what type of tooth whitener Mittens uses.

    I also think that a national sales tax without repealing the 16th amendment (Provided I have my amendments straight) is a really bad idea.


  5. 5
    Draven32 growls and barks:

    VAT is a mistake because the next DemCong will hike it to pay for their pet projects… and before we know it we have a 17% VAT tax (which is what some flat taxers propose) in *addition* to income tax. No thanks.

  6. 6
    Emperor Misha I growls and barks:

    LC Random Numbers says:

    I would accept the idea if there were some way to lock all three rates together so that if one is raised or lowered, all must be raised or lowered at the same time. Let’s see the Dems try to raise a known tax on everyone to payoff their friends.

    …and if there were some bullet-proof way of making sure that future rapacious Congresses couldn’t bypass that “rule” the same way they’ve been riding roughshod over our very foundational document without anybody being able to stop them, I might agree.

    But, then again, if we lived in that kind of world, I’d be riding a unicorn to work every day and power my house with its farts.

    angrywebmaster says:

    I like Cain and think the 9-9-9 plan is a good starting point. It gives us something to actually look at and discuss instead of what type of tooth whitener Mittens uses.

    And we completely agree on every bit of that. His “plan” needs to be shredded in the same wood chipper that we feed Mittens into, but it gives us a starting point, which is a heckuvalot more than the vague pie-in-the-sky promises of some so far unknown “plans” that may or may not appear in the future that we’ve gotten from the rest of the field.

    You can’t have a meaningful discussion unless you have a concrete starting proposal on the table, and so far Cain is the only one who’s delivered on that. I can respect that, even if I wouldn’t piss on his plan to save his life.

    At least HE seems to realize that we need to do something concrete to fix this fucked up situation and that we need concrete proposals to figure out what that “something” is going to be.

  7. 7
    angrywebmaster growls and barks:

    Emperor Misha I @ #:
    Well, it looks like Cain’s cunning plan is working. We’re talking about it and already looking for ways to shred and improve on it.

    My personal idea is to tax the 99%ers 99% of their assets with a 99% sales tax on all their favorite binkies like Starbucks and Ipads and Iphones, etc.

  8. 8
    LibraryGryffon growls and barks:

    Emperor Misha I @ #:

    Exactly, we’ve at least got a starting point for discussion.

    Right now, the presidential hopefuls sound like our current School Board, who have known since MAY that we will have to do something drastic to avoid a $2M+ hole for the 2012-13 school year, and they are only this week starting to look into what that something should be. I don’t think they’d have got off their collective tuchus yet if we didn’t have elections in three weeks with the chance of three new faces on the Board. (It’s sad that there are 5 seats up this year, 7 candidates, and 4 of those are incumbents – I’m one of the other 3.)

    At least Cain is giving us something to gnaw on and refine/replace/adopt. Maybe with this on the table we can get some real discussion so that before the primaries, or at least G-d willing, the election, we can have some realistic, viable solutions on tap.

  9. 9

    Well, to be fair (and y’all know I’m no fan of Cain), he does intend 9-9-9 to replace all those hidden taxes we’re currently paying. He proposes scrapping the entire tax code – every single thing – and using 9-9-9 instead. If there was some kind of guarantee that it would never been increased, I’d be all for that.

    AT this point, however, my plan is to take over a small island off the coast of New Zealand with a few well-armed friends, and telling the rest of the world to go fuck itself. Twice.

  10. 10
    MasterGuns Imperial Swampmaster growls and barks:

    I see 2 major problems with this plan.

    Retirees, the disabled, etc will have taxes RAISED as will the poorer members of our society that currently pay zero federal income taxes.

    The other problem is the state sales taxes around the country. The gubmint cannot and should not be able to dictate to a state what it’s tax rates are. Think of adding 9% national tax on top of the onerous sales taxes you already pay. I think taxes on purchases will approach 18-20% in some places. That is a definite tax increase.

    Taxes on the poor and the middle class will increase greatly. The costs to even set this up border on ridiculous…..and merchants will have more costs added that they will be forced to pass on to the consumer.

    This is an interesting plan that may indeed work but damn sure will not lower taxes for MOST citizens as it is being touted by Mr Cain. In the long run this is a massive tax increase especially as the income tax will still exist and congress can raise all 3 of the 9-9-9’s whenever they want as long as they have a compliant president.

    Nice try Herman but it’s a no-go.

    Semper Fi

  11. 11
    LC Xealot growls and barks:

    Never thought I’d say this, but I’m going to have to respectfully disagree on this one, Sir.

    Now, I did hear it mentioned that the three rates should be locked together, and that would be a great way to ensure the tax doesn’t become a stealthy tax… but this is, at the very least, a massive reform and elimination of a lot of IRS stupidity in the system. I mean, ultimately I’d prefer something closer to the FairTax system, but this is a step in the right direction.

    Think about one immense positive in this: The corporate tax rate would be the lowest in any industrialized nation. All the companies that have been fleeing the US and investing elsewhere would have a powerful incentive to come back. That’s economic growth, and it doesn’t take a stimulus to achieve it, either.

    Are there better ideas? Absolutely. But is the 9-9-9 as envisioned better than what we have now? Damn straight. Maybe it needs some tweaking, and more discussion, but it’s something.

    Your other point is that Herman Cain needs to address government cuts more… now that part I agree with. Obviously we need massive spending cuts, and he needs to talk about this. But if this is a race between Cain and Mittens… well I damn sure know where my vote is going.

  12. 12
    LC Xealot growls and barks:

    One further point: If 9-9-9 gets torpedoed now, it could take Cain with it. His position is pretty fragile at the moment, and damnit.. I don’t want to be stuck with Romney. If it’s Romney and Obama, that’s it… I’m not even bothering to show up at the voting booth. Socialist shitweasels everywhere, even in the Republican Party. And Cain at least isn’t that.

  13. 13
    Emperor Misha I growls and barks:

    LC Xealot @ #:

    We’re not really disagreeing. I agree that it is, in theory, better than what we have, but most importantly I agree that it’s a starting point, something specific that we can work on and hammer out until it becomes a truly good plan.

    And I have no intentions of torpedoing Cain. At this point, he seems to be the only one in the running with some balls, but I also won’t refrain from criticizing specific parts of his platform in order to not hurt him. I don’t think it will hurt him. He’s not like the rest of the crowd at all. He’s a grown man with experience in the real world and he knows that having your specific plans questioned and brought up for debate is not a “defeat”, it’s the beginning of a dialogue.

    Don’t confuse him with a politician, because he’s not one. Politicians open their yaps and then refuse to even consider other points of views because to do so would be a “defeat”, no matter how much they have to spin doctor and obfuscate to make what they said sound like they didn’t say it at all. Cain is not like that. He’s a guy who sees a problem, comes up with an idea of his how to fix it and then throws it out there for the rest of the board room to discuss. That’s what his 9-9-9 plan is to me. A suggestion. A starting point. A “off the top of my head, here’s what we could do but what do the rest of y’all think?”

    I can work with that because that’s how I work every day at my real job. I throw out an idea to my team because it’s the best I can come up with at the time, but I throw it out there not to have everybody agree with me and praise my brilliance, I throw it out there to see if the rest of the team can find flaws in it and improve on it.

    If it turns out that I missed a couple of points or there were things that could be done better, it’s not a “defeat” to me, it’s a win. A win because my goal isn’t to prove that I’m the smartest guy in the room, my goal is to fix the problem using every brain in the room as opposed to just my own. I wouldn’t need the rest of the team if I already felt that I knew everything there is to know, would I?

    Every single thing I’ve ever come up with, every single idea, every single solution I’ve thrown out there because I might just have missed something. More often than not it turned out that I did, that there was something that could be done better that I, having only my own perspective to work with as I am only human, something that seemed obvious to me wasn’t obvious to everybody or wasn’t obvious at all, and every single time I’ve done so I’ve come up with something that was better than what I could have come up with on my own. Not because my initial idea was stupid but because my good idea could be made even better thanks to the benefit of a fresh set of eyes.

    I know that all of you know this already because you, too, have made your lives in the real world, so I’m not telling you something new here. The only thing I’m saying is that you shouldn’t see Cain as “just another politician” because he isn’t, and you shouldn’t see any criticism of his proposals as an “attack” on him because it isn’t. I’m sure he doesn’t see it that way because he’s one of us.

  14. 14
    Lockpick growls and barks:

    In Texas our sales tax rate would be 17.25%. That is unacceptable. I like Cain, but I favor a flat income tax or a national sales tax, not both.

  15. 15
    Emperor Misha I growls and barks:

    Lockpick says:

    In Texas our sales tax rate would be 17.25%.

    And then add Cain’s 9% income tax on top of that.

    I’d rather shoot the motherfucker myself. It’s cheaper.

  16. 16
    Draven32 growls and barks:

    And also remember that this would go a long wait to killing web business…..

  17. 17
    LC CiSSnarl5.7 Chariot Builder growls and barks:

    As some others have said, the Federal sales tax part of this is a show stopper for me. Hell no.

    In TN the sales tax would be….18.4 %

    I cannot support any candidate that wants that sort of tax hike.

    I am confused however at the TEA parties gushing over Cain, I don’t get it. This guy is advocating tax hikes in most every state via the sales tax. How does that fit in with Taxed Enough Already? I smell a Rat here, this isn’t anything close to what I thought the TEA Partiers were supposed to be about.

    IOW A tax is a tax, you can’t cut my Federal from 18% to 9% then turn around and hike the cost of everything I buy by 9 % the math doesn’t work, and in reality, I would hazard I’d be better off with the 18 Federal, as the IRS only whacks my check once every two weeks, I have to buy stuff in life a hell of a lot more often than that.

    For Example…A new Car bought in TN with a price tag of 25,000.00 dollars now becomes a 29,500.00 Car. If you buy a heavier model subject to the unconstitutional “gas guzzler tax” you just coughed up a cool 6000.00 to Uncle Sam at one fell swoop.

    Secondly…he’s more or less called for to abolish the IRS? How exactly? There is still a tax on income. There still needs to be a mechanism in place to collect that tax and enforce the tax laws…i.e. the IRS.

  18. 18
    Draven32 growls and barks:

    well, in theory, you wouldn’t be getting taxed on stuff like your rent, which means you’d save the 9% of your rent that you used to pay in income taxed before…