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Trickle-up-Taxation: My plan to bring local control to California

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California is one of the highest taxed states in the union, and we have very little to show for it. We have crumbling and inadequate infrastructure. Our roads seem to never get repaired yet Sacramento keeps raising our gas and car tax saying they need more money.

California is also one of the largest agricultural states in the nation and produces fruits and vegetables that not only benefits the entire country but the world. Yet, politicians in Sacramento are singlehandedly destroying a multi-billion dollar industry that we depend on by not building adequate water reservoir systems.

We have an unfunded pension crisis in California that desperately needs to be fixed. Because of unrealistic promises, lavish pensions, and incompetent investments based on ideological reasons instead of sound fiscal policy we will see a pension crisis that will most certainly bankrupt the state.

We have a housing crisis, and we are in desperate need of affordable housing. Yet, Sacramento puts so many regulations that the cost of a new home build costs about 40% more due to government regulations.

California is a mess and Californians on both sides of the political aisle want a change. Some want CalExit. A move to secede from the United States and become a separate nation. Others want to split the state into three smaller states; Northern California, Southern California, and California, or create a new state called “New California.” These proposals illustrate the frustration of Californians, but these proposals will do little if anything, and thus will further Californians’ frustration.

My Solution

My solution to the problem begins with a plan I call Trickle-up-taxation.

Trickle-up-taxation is about building a community, not a bureaucracy. It’s about protecting our fundamental rights, while at the same time allowing people to shape their towns and communities in a way which would best serve the people. It’s about freedom.

People want local control, but they are not sure how we can move from the dysfunction and division we currently see ourselves in, to actual freedom and local control.

The beginnings of an answer may lie in fundamentally restructuring our tax system and implementing a new form of taxation called trickle-up-taxation.

Currently, the majority of all state taxes go to Sacramento, and then to our local municipalities. Even though most of us don’t live in Sacramento, our money flows up first to those centers of government, and then they trickle back down to our communities. This form of taxation has resulted in higher taxes, government waste, corruption, fewer freedoms, and less representation.

Therefore, instead of the current form of taxation, which I call, trickle-down-taxation we reverse the flow of taxation and implement trickle-up-taxation. Rather than paying state taxes, we would only pay county and city taxes.

How it works

So here is how it works. Let us say my local city and county tax me at a combined rate of 10% income tax rate. The state government wouldn’t tax me personally but in a sense would tax my city and county. If I make $100,000 a year that would mean I would pay $10,000 in taxes. The state government may take 30%. Meaning from my $10,000 my local city and county would keep $7,000, and the state government would get $3,000. (Percentage and no deductions are only for illustrative purposes only, deductions would still exist. Q&A Section covers this).

This form of taxation wouldn’t just apply to personal income taxes. There are taxes like property taxes (Prop. 13 protection will remain), sales taxes, gasoline taxes, transient occupancy taxes, business license taxes, and so forth. The state wouldn’t take a bulk of these taxes and then trickle the taxes down to the local municipalities. They would just take a percentage of tax dollars generated.

You see, what I’m advocating with trickle-up-taxation is a way to achieve authentic local control. California has 58 counties and 482 municipalities, yet 70% of state employees work in the Sacramento region. It is impossible for politicians and the state government to govern so many municipalities effectively, especially when they are so far removed from your community.

The state government duties should be to establish the general blueprint for the state, yet implementation would be done locally to allow local communities greater flexibility to meet the unique demands of their local community. (FYI: Before our current overbearing centralized system we have today, the state had limited responsibilities for programs and narrow tax authority. Counties were the most prominent level of government and they had the greatest budgetary responsibility and revenue streams – Source CA Controller’s Office).

Why change the tax system?

The question you may be asking is, why do we have to change the flow of taxation to achieve this? The reason is simple to understand. It doesn’t matter whether you live in a progressive or conservative area, when your state legislator comes to you and says that they need 40% instead of 30%, what will be at stake? Less money locally for your progressive or conservative policies.

“You mean to tell me, my state senator wants more money, and we can’t afford to provide after school programs for our children? Replace him; he is trying to destroy our progressive utopia.”

“My state assemblymember wants more money for corporate bailouts? Fire her.”

If more taxes are needed for the state government, it will be for a purpose that a vast majority of Californians agree with. Thus, it will help limit corruption, reduce waste, and also limit partisanism because most of the money and decisions will be decentralized to the local level.

The benefit of trickle-up-taxation is whether you want to live in a progressive city and county like San Francisco which might want to keep a top marginal tax rate of 13.3% and provide you with extensive social programs like free college and community health centers, or Placer County with an income tax rate of 0% and fewer social programs, the beauty of trickle-up-taxation is that you can pick the community which most aligns with your political views and wants. Shouldn’t the community you live in best fit your needs and wants? Isn’t this what the people want, true local control?

Trickle-up-taxation isn’t about progressive or conservative policies. It’s about creating a genuinely representative government; where the day-to-day decisions that affect our community are decided at the local level. While still maintaining state and federal governments to regulate commerce, establish laws, courts, as well as protecting our fundamental human rights.


Have more questions about Trickle-up-Taxation? Visit our Question and Answer page to see if your question has been answered. Otherwise, contact us and we’ll get you an answer right away.

 

Mr. Roditis a candidate for California State Controller. He is an entrepreneur and owns several companies. He graduated from UCSD with a B.A. in Political Science/International Relations. He's a former City Commissioner with the City of Anaheim, CA. He's a Conservative Constitutional Federalist. Follow him on Twitter @KonRoditis

Politics

Sen. Dean Heller is a perfect manifestation of the Trump conservative

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As we learned in the aftermath of Rep. Mark Sanford’s (SC) GOP primary loss to Katie Arrington after he was targeted for elimination by Donald Trump for having the audacity to criticize him while being “unhelpful” to his campaign, conservatives are being systematically snuffed out, politically speaking, from the Republican party and are being replaced by a re-branded version of conservatism where unconditional loyalty to Trump has replaced principles.

The fallout from this reality is twofold. First, it severs all ties the GOP once had with Reagan-styled conservatism where it was understood that government can never be the solution to our problems because government is the problem. Second, it opened the door for Trump’s Nationalist Populism to fill the void created when the GOP abandoned the conservative ideals of limited government and free-market capitalism, along with watering down fiscal and social conservatism.

While there are many examples of what this looks like, there is perhaps no greater example of re-branded conservatism than Sen. Dean Heller (NV), the GOP establishment candidate endorsed by Trump.

When Heller made his decision to run for re-election last year, he proved to be the epitome of what a Trump conservative looks like when he defended Planned Parenthood during an appearance at a local town hall, saying:

“I will protect Planned Parenthood.”

“I have no problems with federal funding for Planned Parenthood.”

Since his primary victory—a job made easier after Trump conservative Danny Tarkanian dropped out to run for Congress at Trump’s request—Heller has been doubling down on his Trump loyalty pledge. For example: with Trump’s trade war heating up, Heller recently appeared on FOX News Trump TV to declare that he would give Trump “a wide berth” when it comes to imposing tariffs, which means he will put Trump ahead of his Constitutional responsibilities.

In his TV appearance, Heller also pledged to run on Trump’s tax cuts because, according to him, it has meant $2,500 more a year in Nevada paychecks, despite a recent Bureau of Labor Statistics report showing that average wages are down since the tax law was passed. The tax cuts have proved to be a windfall for corporations, however, so maybe Heller can run on that as we get closer to November.

As I wrote earlier this week, this embrace of Trump’s faux conservatism has given us casualties outside of the Republican party, and Heller once again proves my point. Despite his current pro-abortion position—I say current because he’s been on both sides of the abortion issue depending on how close he is to an election—Heller recently received the full endorsement of the National Right to Life.

The only “conservative” part of the Trump conservative is the use of the word, proving once again that the GOP is no longer home of the conservative movement.

Originally posted on The Strident Conservative.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

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Democrats

Family separation battle will save DACA and lead to citizenship for illegals

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The latest outrage du jour by the Washington Establishment comes from the news that children are being temporarily separated from their parents as they try to enter the country illegally.

In her latest presentation of the gospel according to Nancy Pelosi, the part-time Catholic and full-time idiot, blasted “all people of faith in our country” for depriving DREAMers of the “respect they deserve” and for “taking babies away from mothers and fathers.” Meanwhile, National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Steve Stivers (R-OH) issued his call for an end to family separations at the border.

In the Senate, GOP Senator Lisa Murkowski (AK) called for an end to the “zero tolerance” immigration policies. On the other side of the aisle, Democrats rushed to the border to grab a handful of election-year photo ops to document what former San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro called “state-sponsored child abuse.”

Melania Trump, in addition to four former first ladies, shared how they “hated” to see families separated and called on America to “govern with heart.”

The outrage over family separation is coming from both sides, but it’s fake. These reactions are nothing more than election-year grandstanding by politicians in both parties who have no interest at all at fixing the immigration problem.

As I wrote last week, the GOP-controlled House is already working on an immigration bill that makes DACA permanent and provides a pathway to citizenship for approximately 1.8 million DREAMers. House Speaker Paul Ryan made sure to point out that this legislation also includes a provision ending family separation.

Yesterday, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) announced that he will introduce a bill that ends family separations at the border, which in an amazing bit of coincidence comes at a time when his Democrat opponent for the US Senate, Beto O’Rourke, also called for the separation policy to end. Cruz’s proposal enjoys the unanimous support of Senate Democrats.

For the record, this “for the children” approach to illegal immigration is how we ended up with DACA in the first place. Also note, as this article shows, that Trump is lying when he blames Democrats for the family separation fiasco.

The family separation issue is being used as a primer for the eventual surrender on immigration. And for those who believe that Trump won’t support this surrender, consider this: he allowed Melania to openly oppose his immigration policy, and he recently announced that he’s open to anything that Congress puts on his desk, even if it means doing the opposite of what he promised to get elected.

Originally posted on The Strident Conservative.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

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Opinions

It isn’t Never-Trump or Always-Trump destroying conservatism, it’s Sometimes-Trump

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One of the craziest—or should I say laziest—accusations leveled against me by Trump’s die-hard loyalists whenever I dare to call him out for breaking a campaign promise, getting caught in a lie, or promoting unconstitutional non-conservative ideas, is that I’m a liberal. Sometimes, they go so far as to accuse me of working for George Soros.

As I’ve said many times in response, I don’t work for Mr. Soros, but since money’s been a little tight at the Strident Conservative lately, if anyone has his number, I’d appreciate it if you’d send it my way.

It’s a sad reality that these pathetic taunts are what passes for political discourse in the Age of Trump. Gone are the days when differences could be civilly discussed based on facts instead of emotion.

Another sad reality of this behavior is that it’s a sign that the end of conservatism is near, as Trump’s small army of loyal followers attempt to rebrand conservatism by spreading the lie that he is a conservative and, using binary logic, accusing anyone who opposes him of being a liberal.

This rebranding effort has had an impact. Last week, RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel warned Republican hopefuls that anyone who opposed Trump’s agenda would be “making a mistake.”

McDaniel’s threat was issued following the GOP primary defeat in South Carolina by conservative Mark Sanford after he was personally targeted by Trump himself. Sanford’s crime? Disloyalty to the NY Liberal.

Another source of damage to conservatism has come from evangelicals and the so-called conservative media. In the name of self-preservation, they choose to surrender their principles by promoting the lie that Trump is a conservative. Some of these voices have taken to labelling conservatives who oppose Trump as Never-Trump conservatives, or worse, branding them as liberals and/or Democrats, as was recently written in a piece at TheFederalist.com:

“Trump may be an unattractive and deeply flawed messenger for contemporary conservatism. But loathe though they might be to admit it, what’s left of the Never-Trump movement needs to come to grips with the fact that the only words that currently describe them are liberals and Democrats.”

Then there are those who have adopted a Sometimes-Trump attitude about the president, where everything Trump does is measured using a good Trump/bad Trump barometer. While it has become fashionable for Sometimes-Trump conservatives to stand on their soap boxes condemning both Never-Trump conservatives and Always-Trump faux conservatives, I believe that this politically bipolar approach to Trump is the greatest threat of all to Constitutional conservatism in America.

Sometimes-Trump conservatives have accepted the lie that it’s okay to do a little evil in exchange for a greater good. Though they may fly a conservative banner, their lukewarm attitude about Trump is much like the attitude we see in the Laodicean church mentioned in the Book of Revelations (3:15-16).

“I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”

Trump is a double-minded man unstable in all his ways (James 1:8). When lukewarm Sometimes-Trump conservatives choose to overlook this reality, they end up watering-down conservatism to the point that it has no value or power to change America’s course.

As lukewarm Sometimes-Trump conservatives point to the Always-Trump and Never-Trump factions as the reason for today’s conservative divide, remember that it’s the unenthusiastic, noncommittal, indifferent, half-hearted, apathetic, uninterested, unconcerned, lackadaisical, passionless, laid back, couldn’t-care-less conservative imposters in the middle who are really responsible.

Originally posted on The Strident Conservative.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

Follow the Strident Conservative on Twitter and FacebookSubscribe to receive podcasts of radio commentaries: iTunes | Stitcher | Tune In | RSS

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