The GOP winning streak continues this week. Bush's blue ribbon tax reform panel has come out with some real winners of a recommendation:
President Bush's tax advisory commission indicated on Tuesday that it would not propose replacing the income tax with a national sales tax or a value-added tax, but would recommend limits in the popular tax deductions for mortgage interest and employer-provided health insurance.
Now I'm not a real big fan of the mortgage interest deduction, because it drive up the price of housing and makes people over-invested in their homes. But to end the deduction would 1. Drive down the price of houses and 2. Totally screw everyone who owns a house. So this is about as politically an unpopular a move as you can come up with short of making eating puppies tax deductable. In other words:
This may be the dumbest major independent-commission proposal in all of human history. It would be one thing to trade the home-mortgage deduction for a serious flat tax, because that would, in the end, even everything out. All this will do is deflate real-estate values, which are the primary source of middle-class wealth in the United States. Idiocy.
That's John Podhoretz a conservative who wrote a book called Bush Country. The wheels are really starting to come off the Bush express.