The United States of Taxflation

When you go to the store and something you bought for five bucks six months ago is suddenly going for $5.25, and you just know it’s going to cost you $5.50 in another six months, chances are you just shrug and buy it anyway. After all, it’s only 50 cents.

But it’s not only 50 cents. It’s also a 10 percent increase in one year.

Now ask yourself this: Is your kind and caring boss going to give you a 10 percent raise to help you keep up with your daily expenses?

I didn’t think so.

The fact is, as you dig into your pocket for that extra 50 cents, there should be smoke coming out of your ears. Prices are rising everywhere and on everything – for the true cost of inflation on everyday items Americans purchase, have a glance at the Chapwood Index – and it’s high time people got outraged and asked why.

And here’s why: We’re overtaxed and overregulated. We should coin a word for it – taxflation.

People tend to think prices go up because of corporate greed. They think companies want only to make huge piles of money and that they’ve been put on earth to squeeze as much of it as they can out of consumers.

[sharequote align=”center”]Believe it or not, you can do a lot, because you’re an American citizen, and you get to vote.[/sharequote]

But that’s just not so.

The real reason the cost of everything from a tube of toothpaste to dental implants keeps going up is not corporate greed. It’s that our local, state and federal governments are constantly bombarding us with new taxes and onerous regulations. The fact is, companies have to raise the prices on their products just to keep up with the ever-increasing taxes and regulations that raise cost of making their products. And when their costs go up, they have no choice but to pass them on to consumers.

Imagine you’re the CEO of Widget Corp. You have a nice penthouse office and a very attractive salary and a few thousand people who report to you – but you’re still not the boss. You report to your company’s shareholders, and they expect you to keep selling widgets and producing dividends. So when the government raises corporate taxes and passes new regulations that affect how Widget Corp. does business, you can’t go tell your shareholders they’ll have to settle for less. You have no choice but to raise the price of your widgets to match those increasing costs. And now you’re charging $5.50 for a widget that cost $5 last year, and we all know who’s paying for it.

Consider, for example, what it costs to grow a navel orange in California and have it picked and sorted and carried by truck all the way to Maine. Now think about what happens when California regulates water use, and when it creates new regulations regarding the handling and packaging of that orange. Now think about what happens when the federal government and all the states between California and Maine – and that’s a lot of states – increase taxes and regulations on trucking. Toss in an increase in tolls, which are a form of tax. It’s no wonder you’re forking over up to $2 for a single orange.

Fresh baked bread cools on racks at the Great Harvest Bread Company on Wednesday, June 13, 2007, in Salt Lake City. Consumer prices shot up at the fastest pace in 20 months in May, fueled by a surge in gas prices, although inflation pressures were moderate in most other areas. So far this year, consumer prices have been rising at an annual rate of 5.5 percent, double the 2.5 percent increase for all of 2006. The acceleration has occurred because of the surge in energy costs and increases in food costs that have been caused in part by higher demand for ethanol fuel, which is produced with corn. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac)
Prices are going up to cover the cost of more government taxes and regulation. (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac)

And now consider how much money corporations had to pay their consultants and attorneys to sort through all the new regulations just to provide health care to their employees after ObamaCare went into effect. Who ultimately paid for all of that? You, the consumer.

So what you can do about it? Believe it or not, you can do a lot, because you’re an American citizen, and you get to vote.

So when you step into the voting booth, ask yourself how that bond proposition or tax increase on the ballot affects you. Sure, some taxes and regulations are necessary. But we’re already way past some. Ask yourself: How will that proposal affect me? Is it necessary? Will it make my life better or worse?

And then do the same for the candidates on that ballot. Will they help you hold on to what you’ve got, or will they tax-and-spend you to the point where prices have to go up and you’re worse off? Your job is simple: Reflect on which candidate and which party will make things work for you, and then vote accordingly.

They say there are two things in this world you can count on: death and taxes. I say we need to add a third: rising prices. And it all comes together. Prices rise because taxes are killing us. It’s time that we the people stopped this once and for all.

TheBlaze contributor channel supports an open discourse on a range of views. The opinions expressed in this channel are solely those of each individual author.