From Happy's blog:
Phase VII: Destruction of the Tax Base, and With It, Government Health Care
Believing they could continue to soak the rich for all their needs; With massive deficits that must be repaid; With 50% of the population paying just 3% of the tax base; The government finally killed off the productivity that drives American growth. With a tax base massively skewed to the productive members of society, the ones that take all the risk of capital, the tax burden became too much. No longer were folks willing to take risks to see rewards which were confiscated to the tune of 90% or more in federal tax rates. Tax rates that continued its northward spiral in a misguided attempt to pay spiraling entitlement programs. Programs that bought off the populace years prior.
As growth plummeted so did jobs and productivity. And with that came the lose of tax revenues to fund the already shrinking and rationed government health care entitlements. Ultimately what the government realized was the wisdom of their ways. They realized they could not continue to promise FREE=MORE to a poor and middle class population while also funding that obligation from a small and shrinking rich population burdened under the weight of massive tax hikes and anti growth programs.
At this point the government made an amazing proposition to its entitled masses. Either the poor and middle class would now have to cough up more than 3% of the federal tax revenue, or they would have to dismantle the entitlement programs funded almost entirely on the backs of the rich, a population who's numbers have dwindled drastically since the tax and spend policies were initiated two decades prior.
The people now had a choice. Pay their share or go without. One hundred years on the road to socialism was finally meeting its demise.
I especially liked stage VII, how apropos. I have been stating similar things on here for awhile, but perhaps, not so eloquently (who knew a hospitalist could write?)
Folks, if we don't dramatically reduce costs, and realize that we might need to raise taxes on more than just the rich, than this will fail. It will fail epically.
BTW- this is why I support Zeke's plan. A national VAT tax rate of 10% to fund a single payor system. EVERYONE PAYS.