Last year, a one-year cut in the payroll taxes that working Americans pay to finance Social Security was enacted in the name of so-called economic "stimulus."
But, like the rest of the economic stimuli that have come from Washington over the last three years, the only thing that has been stimulated is the growing hole of national debt into which we sink deeper and deeper.
Now, unsurprisingly, our president and his Democratic colleagues want to continue, and possibly expand, this payroll tax holiday despite its obvious failure.
Wait a second: Failure is a matter of definition.
If the point was to help get our economy back on the road to growth and prosperity, the payroll tax holiday has been a failure. But if the point of the payroll tax holiday was not to reduce government interference in our lives but to keep it, grow it, and strengthen the decided movement of the last three years to turn our nation into a welfare-state plantation, it's a great idea.
That is really what is going on here and why President Barack Obama and his Democratic colleagues on Capitol Hill love the idea.
Unlike our income taxes that government takes for general revenue and unspecified spending, the payroll tax is earmarked and specified. It pays for Social Security.
A cut in income taxes, even if not accompanied with an equivalent cut in government spending, puts the pressure for such cuts in place and carries with it the prospect of reduction of government interference in our lives.
But there is no such possibility with the payroll tax. When the tax was reduced "temporarily" last year from 6.2 percent to 4.2 percent, were working Americans asked to agree to an equivalent cut in their Social Security benefits that that payroll tax pays for?
Of course not.
What politician in his or her right mind would suggest to working Americans that they intend to cut Social Security benefits?
But cutting the payroll tax is a dream idea for anyone whose project is turning our nation into a welfare state.
This is because, unlike the income tax, which almost half Americans don't pay, practically every working man and woman pays the payroll tax.
And, what the payroll tax pays for, Social Security, is impossible to cut.
So, if the payroll tax is cut, you have to find another way to pay for those Social Security retirement benefits.
So how about rich people?
Democrats would like for super high-income earners, the top 1 percent, who already pay 40 percent of America's income taxes, to also start paying for everyone's Social Security benefits.
Why not also force high-income earners to put their addresses up on the internet and we can all send them our grocery bills, our car payments, and our kid's tuition bills? Let's get the rich to pay for all our bills, including our retirement.
Unfortunately, some Republicans are allowing themselves to be suckered into this political blackmail.
Cutting payroll taxes earmarked for a Social Security system that is already bankrupt is no way to run a country and no way for people that are allegedly free and responsible citizens to live.
And using a payroll tax holiday as a back door plan to turn Social Security into a middle class welfare program does not bode well for our nation's future.
If the point is to fix Social Security, let working Americans keep their payroll tax and use it to fund their own private retirement account -- an idea that 3 of 4 Americans under 50 favor.
If the point is to restore our economy, let's cut the trillion dollars in new spending we've larded into the government over the last three years and start focusing on rewarding rather than punishing individual freedom and success.
In 20 years there will be no funds to pay one third of the benefits of retirees. (comments)
The growing percentage of our voters is not white and they largely vote for Democrats. (comments)
Free choice and private initiative seems to violate the religious convictions of liberals. (comments)
Why does America convey neutrality between a nation that is indisputably free and a government that is not? (comments)
In a Pew Research survey of last October, 25 percent of blacks expressed favorability toward the Tea Party, just 6 points less than whites. (comments)
Everyone, except the teachers unions, seems to grasp that public education in America, particularly in low-income communities, suffers because of lack of competition. (comments)
Mainstream means shrugging your shoulders at $17 trillion in federal debt, $4 trillion in federal spending, and a tax code of over 73,000 pages. (comments)
Cochran's agenda is to serve up government pork and protect the interests of his friends in Washington. (comments)
Thought police have no place in a free society. (comments)
Americans elected a president, twice, who was not afraid of being bold, of taking on hard issues, and of being ideological. (comments)
Religion and the institutions of traditional marriage and family are being challenged and, rather than being seen as enablers of our freedom, are now regularly portrayed as obstacles to it. (comments)
No Americans have suffered more from the improper use of government and abuse of political power than black Americans. (comments)
Democrats and the left wing press know that fanning these still racially sensitive flames is the way to turn out black voters. (comments)
Should conservatives pander to the current liberal trends of the country to try and win votes in the short term? (comments)
The incidence of black conservatism is far deeper and widespread than most believe. (comments)
Congressional Budget Office report in February projects that Obamacare will shrink the American economy by 2.5 million jobs. (comments)
Limiting the amount of funds that free citizens can contribute stifles competition and protects incumbents. (comments)
Liberal code word for 'racist': someone like Paul Ryan, who wants to make Americans better off by giving them freedom, choice, responsibility, and less government. (comments)
Real political leadership means pushing public opinion toward one's conviction of what is right. (comments)
My colleagues find in their investigations around the nation that Kermit Gosnell was by no means one of a kind. (comments)