Folks, listen up, I've got a great plan.
What we're going to do is cut taxes to the point of making government ineffective, and then you're going to blame government when they can no longer provide the services that your taxes were initially setup to pay for. How does that sound?
Well, as we've seen in the case of California, slashing taxes and yet still trying to maintain government programs has not only made the programs themselves fail, but has practically bankrupted the state treasury (literally). The people of California have decided through referendum, that cutting taxes is a good thing, and this idea has been supported and re-supported by Republicans and Libertarians. While it has become a political disaster for Democrats to support raising taxes, they're the only rational group in this whole mess, understanding that to pay for necessary government programs, the government needs money to operate.
However, I suppose Republicans don't find schools, healthcare, or police and fire protection important. Legislatures slash to expenditures on necessary programs, meanwhile the federal government continues to expand the Pentagon and military budgets which puts us further and further in debt, with no prospect of things changing anytime soon.
I think the real aim of Republicans, and especially Libertarians, in cutting these necessary government expenditures is an effort to cut these programs so much that privatization therefore becomes necessary, giving corporations the chance to make huge profits in providing necessary services that government should be providing. The reason the regular populace votes for cutting taxes but for increased services, is because they fail to understand that one pays for the other. The federal government (and often state governments as well, but to a lesser degree) operates on such a high deficit-spending model for such a long period of time, that we've become accustomed to accepting services for something we didn't pay for. This also brings into question the accountability of the taxes we are paying; while we cut these programs, the money is still being spent somewhere, but where exactly is that money going. On what is our government, both state and federal, spending our tax dollars on? I think that if we as a populace knew exactly where are money was going, we would be much more inclined to stop spending it on wasted expenditures (does anyone remember the Bridge to Nowhere?), and start spending it on useful social and public interest institutions that will create the greatest good for the great number (can anyone say Utilitarianism?). Raising taxes would not even become necessary if our government started spending money on those things that benefitted society, instead of acting with impunity and behind closed doors, and spending money on whatever our legislators find to be politically convenient within their respective districts/regions, etc.
A day will come, mark my words, when the United States federal treasury will collapse, the burden of debt to income will simply overwhelm it, and it will cease to function in any meaningful way. At this time our dependence upon foreign borrowing, specifically from countries like China and Japan, will come home to roost, and when we can no longer support our debt load, the country will collapse economically and militarily. That will be the end of the United States empire.
And to think, all we have to do is start paying taxes; or in simpler terms, all we have to start doing is paying for what we receive (and more importantly receive what we pay for).