Sunday, October 05, 2003

Paying the Cost
Alexander Marriott October 4, 2003

With a near one billion dollar tax increase now coming into effect, the businessmen of the state are now computing what they will have to pay to the state for nothing other than making money. One of these businessmen is my dad, and it is to him and all the other small businessmen who are being forced to hand over their money to the state of Nevada that I dedicate this article.

I remember that fateful day in August when, after such a valiant effort to halt the push towards more taxes, Assemblyman John Marvel switched his vote from no taxes to more taxes, thus given the two-thirds legitimacy needed to legally pass them. I wish to include here a letter my dad sent our Assemblyman, Mr. Conklin, because it says, more eloquently than I could, what all businessmen ought to have said in this fight, but were either too scared or unable to say,

“Dear Mr. Conklin:

I received something in the mail yesterday that compels me to thank you and colleagues personally. Sent from the Nevada Department of Taxation, it is an explanation of the Modified Business Tax due to go into effect tomorrow [October 1st]. Based upon our payroll for 2002 we anticipate a tax bill of $20,000. This represents a $17,000 increase from the head tax we previously paid. I am so glad the legislature stood on principle as I am a greedy businessman whose own needs are of no consequence compared to the poor, old and children of irresponsible parents. My own children are especially pleased that their father went into business, not to serve the needs of his customers, but to be a fount of money for others he does not even know. I just have one request from you: since you (or your colleagues) believe that need is the sole criteria for public money, I too will need money (est. $20,000) shortly. Will you represent my company to the legislature to help me? Thanks again.

Michael Marriott”

What kind of world are we living in when we penalize the people who produce the way of life we all take for granted so that we can give money to all the dregs or unfortunates in society? If you tie your happiness into giving and making sure unfortunates and bums are better off then give your own money to them. You have no moral right to use the gun of the state to expropriate the money of businesses and individuals who have nothing to do with you or your happiness.

Of course, children and old people were only a convenient excuse to try to raise taxes. The real reason why taxes “had” to be raised was because Senator Titus, Mr. Conklin, the KenGuinn, and all of the other geniuses in Carson City didn’t know how to stay within their means and therefore considered it the fault of everyone else. Thus we all have to pay for their failure and shortsightedness.

Just because I and most of you reading this don’t own businesses and don’t have to pay this particular tax doesn’t mean it won’t affect us. Hiring an employee is suddenly a very expensive proposition; both benefits and raises will be curtailed or businesses will choose not to hire nearly as many people as they would have without the taxes.

Surprisingly, not all businesses were against these anti-business punitive actions. The Casino Industry seemed to think that screwing over the other businesses in the state would somehow save it from taxation. Though the taxes they are paying have increased drastically as well, they are betting that somehow, they’ll be safe from future taxation because the rest of the businesses in the state will shoulder the burden of ever-increasing welfare roles and entitlement programs.

The Casino Industry is like the magicians Siegfried and Roy; they are both dealing with very dangerous things, the Casino Industry with the government, the magicians with giant tigers. Recently, Roy was attacked and very nearly killed when one of these tigers attacked him on stage. The only problem in the analogy though is that the Casino Industry won’t just be very nearly killed, it will be entirely destroyed along with the rest of the businesses in this state if this Soviet style tax and spend political philosophy continues unabated and unchallenged by its victims.

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