Counting Government’s Calories

Member Group : From the Kitchen Table

We have all seen the new calorie information that the government has required restaurants and fast food places to include on their menu listings. The calorie information is to be clearly and prominently displayed so every one of us is able to see it without searching for it.

The thinking is that we, as consumers, should be aware of every calorie that is contained in the foods that we eat because Americans are all becoming obese, and we need this assistance to help us cut down on our consumption.

Perhaps we should also apply this logic to our obese government, to help them cut down on their obsession with consuming our tax dollars.

So, every gas dispensing tank in America should contain a label, clearly and prominently displayed, with the exact price per gallon of each tax that has been added to the cost of gasoline. Every single tax, at both the state and the federal levels, should be included in this label.

Every utility bill should have a label, in bold print at the top, listing the taxes that have been added to the cost of each utility. Every phone bill should be configured in the same way.

If sales tax has been added to a purchase, every bill should list the amount of tax in bold letters that are clearly visible.

Our paychecks should change, with each wage earner receiving a check for the full amount of his pay, and then being asked to write a separate check for each tax being consumed by the government, including federal withholding, Social Security, Medicare, state withholding, local withholding, federal and state unemployment, and the occupational privilege tax. Each person will now be fully aware of the amount of his wage that the government is consuming every time that he receives a paycheck.

Banks should no longer be able to include property taxes in the mortgage payment. Instead every property owner should have to actually write the check every year.

If a business must raise prices because of a tax, that business should not only be allowed, but required, to post the increase along with the tax that caused it in a prominent place in their establishment so every consumer is fully aware of the reason for a price increase. So when a mandate such as Obamacare, or printing every calorie count for every menu item, results in price increases for consumers, we are all aware that we are actually paying another tax.

The government has told us that the first step toward reducing consumption is to label our levels of consumption. And it has also told us that the government is the agency to ensure that such labeling occurs.

It seems only logical then, that the first step toward reducing government’s consumption is to clearly label the level of its consumption every time that it occurs, and that the same government that is requiring such labeling of others would be not only willing, but eager, to participate in the exercise.

Taxpayers who are aware of the exact amount of their wages that are being eaten by the government would most probably act to lower those consumption levels.

And after all, isn’t less consumption the goal?