Newspaper Archive of
Hells Canyon Journal
Halfway, Oregon
September 3, 1986     Hells Canyon Journal
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September 3, 1986

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Page 4 Helis Canyon Journal, September 3, 1986 Cong. Bob Smith Reports I bet you thought The Most Massive Tax Reform in the History of America, now moving toward passage in Congress, would be the last word in tax reform; the last you'd hear about changing for years; the end of the discussion. I bet you'd be wrong. Even before the ink dries on this year's ambitious reform package, the winds of Washington have begun fill- ing with the oma if discon- tent. Liberal House mit that they've helped Ore- gon Senator Bob Packwood create an unstoppable tax reform package for Septem- ber presentation to the full House and Senate. But the final stamp of success for this reform is the President's signature, and that was promised only for a bill which avoids tax increases. Happily, today's reform package does that. But it has left leaders of the crusade for higher taxes muttering un- der their breath. Their chant is, "More. More. More." and they've already chosen" the steed to carry them there. It's called "VAT," the Value-Added Tax. It could be one of the most diabolical ideas yet to come from the eternally-creative minds of public pickpockets. Simply stated, it's a na- tiodal sales tax, a 50-state version of the same thing Oregon voters heartily reject at the polls every time they're asked. But don't expect Congress to offer any simple, pedestrian sales tax bill. This one's special. VAT is a sales tax that multiplies itself. Every time a product increases in value during its manufacturing, distribution and sales life, the increased value is sub- ject to a federal sales tax; 10 percent is usually mention- ed. Let me offer an example of how it might work with something simple, like the WE CAN GIVE YOU A TRULY SAFE WAY TO CLOSE REAL ESTATE TRANSA C TIONS See us for... Term Escrows -Escrow Closing Land Title Escrow Co. i 2043 Main St., Baker, Ore. I 523-3663 '1 u.= I radio in your car. The radio-maker might buy the components for $20, and once assembled, the finished radio would be sold to the car-maker for $50. That $30 added value would be taxed, making the total cost of the radio $53. Now the car-maker fits the radio with brackets for his newest model and sells it to the dealer for $100. The added value is $47, worth $4.70 in taxes, when the dealer has a radio which cost him $104.70. By the time he installs the radio, it cost you $150, another $4.53 VAT has been paid. And you own a radio on which you've paid $12.23 in federal taxes. Unlike property taxes or state and local income taxes, though, your VAT taxes wouldn't be deductible un- de the new reforms, any more than local sales taxes. If proponents get their way, they wouldn't even be no- ticeable. It's designed to be "pain- less." But in reality, the value-added tax would hurt--and consequently col- lect more revenue for the Treasury--than any scheme that has come before it. VAT is the grand-daddy of "consumption" taxes which Congress has relied upon to raise money in recent years when they've encountered strong resistance to higher, more visible, income taxes. Worst of all, the value-ad- ded tax scrapes the pockets of those who can least afford to pay extra taxes: low and middle-income families and those who get by on fixed incomes like retirement plans. But VAT can be worth $200 billion to the Treasury. Its success in Europe created the first fans here nearly a decade ago and the no-in- crease reforms have made it a hot ticket on the "Meet the Press" circuit again. In my opinion, that's where it should stay. If VAT moves out of the realm of studio speculation and into the legislative pipeline, Con- gress might unleash a mon- ster it would find impossible to control. A monitoring program to determine the impact of Expo 86 travel in Oregon this summer continues to reveal substantial increases over a year ago. L.E. "Bud" George, state highway traffic engineer, said counts at six of eight special traffic monitoring program sites were higher than a year ago during a reporting period which end- ed August 15. The biggest hike was 13.5 percent, 1-205 on Govern- ment Island, while other points recording increases were U.S. 101, two miles north of Gearheart, 9.1 per- cent; U.S. 101, one mile north of the California state line, 8.8 percent; 1-84, about a mile south of the Baker-Malheur County line, 5.8 percent; I-5, three miles, south of Ashland, 3 percent; and U.S. 97, three miles north of Dufur, 1.8 percent. I was late to work beeaase... "My pet chicken got loose in an ice storm and froze to the driveway. I had to walt around to thaw it loose." Back to School Special " Deluxe Burger onl~ offer good tArough September 7 TM 523-6595. THE FISHERMAN'S BLUES By Earl Miller I cast a fly out on the riffles, For the fish to bite as they choose; A big rainbow came up and took it, Now I've got the fisherman.'s blues. I fought the big" brute for an hour, He was long as a school teacher's flown; I had out all the line on my outfit, It was just as the sun went down. He finally took tl e willows, My line was a tangled up mess; But when I pulled to tighten my line, He had gone down the river I guess. Oh, it's true what the fishermen tell you, I'll always believe what they say; When they tell of the times they went fishin', And the biggest one, he got away. Well I walked through rain and through darkness, And the water squished out of my shoes; And whenever I think of that rainbow, Then I get the fisherman's blues. Patronize Our Advertisers ON ALL OUTERWEAR Sizes S-M-L Denim Corduroy Twill Poly-Filled Cotton Regularly $45-$55 FOR TEN DAYS ONLY i JUST 1719 Main St. Baker