Friday, October 16, 1959
THE NEW BERN MIRROR, NEW BERN, N. C.
Experts Say the Only Way
Our Tax Bill Can Go Is Up
That can be answered in one
^vord—up—as a revealing article in
U. S. News & World Report makes
Specifically, the magazine says,
the typical taxpayer will pay at
least 10 per cent more this year
than last. In part, that is because
average American income is high
er, and so the tax bite goes deep
er. But, in addition, tax rates are
still rising on all the government-
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al levels—federal, state and local.
One current example is the fed
eral gasoline tax. It has been rais
ed by a cent, from three to four
cents a gallon. That may not seem
Sun. - Mon. • Tues.
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An MCM release in Techni-
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In the Right
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like ve^ much—^but it will take
$577 million a year more out of
our pockets. And the Federal so
cial security tax, borne by both em
ployees and employers, will rise
another notch next January 1.
In sum, as the magazine puts it,
“The fact is that the tax load in
this country, already at an all-time
high, is shooting up at a record
rate for peacetime.” Then it pre
sents a new study of our tax bur
dens, based on official data.
The state legislatures have been
increasing taxes—on gasoline, cig
arettes, income, etc., on an unpre
cedented scale. Communities and
counties have pretty well followed
suit, by raising property tax rates
or assessments, and by increasing
their take in other ways. So, U. S.
News finds, the nation’s total tax
bill for the current fiscal year will
come to the incredible sum of $113
billion—not counting another $13.3
billion of Social Security taxes.
The magazine also finds that the
tax increase is outrunning the pop
ulation increase, which simply
means that per capita taxes are
higher. So the average taxpayer
will find that his total bill is about
$63.01 higher this year than last.
And that doesn’t tell the whole
story—not by a long shot. “In the
year that starts next July 1, anoth
er sharp increase in tax collections
is a certainty if the economy con
tinues to grow.” For example,
should the national income increase
by five per cent—a modest expecta
tion—in the coming year, the tax
load will shoot up to $118 billion.
Another way to look at taxes is
in their relationship to national in
come. In 1950, the total bill amount
ed to just over 21 per cent of that
income. Now it has passed 25 per
cent. Most of the increase is at
tributable to federal taxes, because
of the steeply graduated income
tax rate. U. S. News observes that
a family which doubles its income
over a period of years may find
that its federal income tax has
tripled. And businesses are in a
similar spot. If a corporation grows
beyond the $25,000 profit bracket,
its top federal tax rate shoots up
from 30 per cent to 52 per cent.
Finally, even under these con
ditions the federal government is
n’t yet able to make both ends
meet. Due to the high level of
business activity, says U. S. News,
federal income is expected to sub
stantially exceed the $77 billion
estimate of last January. But
spending has exceeded estimates
by a stiil larger margin. Hence: “A
deficit of perhaps half a billion
dollars for the Treasury, where a
small surplus has been foreseen ”
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Guy Hamilton, Jr.
Vou and other Americans have already
been taxed $5,500,000,000 for feder
ally-owned and operated “public
And now the “public power” pro
moters are after $10,000,000,000 more
—almost twice again as much—to put
the federal government deeper and
deeper into the electric business.
All this spending f[r more and more
federal “public poweif” is unnecessary.
For the hundreds of iidependent elec
tric light and power companies, like
yours, are ready and able to supply
all the low-price electricity people will
need—without depending on taxes.
“Public power” spending goes on
because most people don’t know they
are paying the cost. The best way to
stop it is to tell your friends and
neighbors what’s happening. When
enough people understand, you can
be sure something will be done to
halt this unnecessary tax spending.
c CAROLINA POWER & UGHT COMPANY J