Am I the only person who finds it disturbing that the misnamed “Fair Tax” is being promoted through ads fanning class warfare? Speaking as a greedy irresponsible multimillionaire, I will admit that my effective Illinois state income tax rate last year was a paltry 1.33 percent. If the constitutional amendment passes, my effective tax rate on the identical income will be … 1.33%. Most of my income consists of retirement income, which Illinois does not tax.

Folks who are serious about addressing the state’s fiscal woes need to do four things: cut state spending, and I mean muscle and bone not just fat; get control over the public employee feeding-trough pension system; tax retirement income; and elect state legislators who have the cojones to do it. We could certainly have a rational discussion about a graduated tax system if the state got its finances under control.

Unfortunately, the constitutional amendment surrenders the taxpayers’ best control over the tax system in return for nothing. This amendment vote should be viewed as a negotiation between the taxpayers and the legislators. In a negotiation, the party who gives away the most valuable bargaining chip for nothing is, to quote our President, a sucker and a loser.

Bob Stigger

Oak Park

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