Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“The knack of flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy”     Douglas Adams,    The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

March 9, 2009

A Tax By Any Other Name Is Still A Tax

by Brad Warbiany

Obama says those of us making less than $250K/year will not see our taxes increased “one dime”. Does he actually believe that user fees aren’t taxes? Because he’s gonna raise them:

Extra fees get under the skin of all but the most zen travellers. First you pay one price for your ticket, and then they tack on a bunch more in taxes and fees? Outrageous! But if the American government’s “Aviation Passenger Security Fee”, currently at $2.50 for each leg of travel, is already annoying you, the Obama administration has some bad news: it won’t be staying at $2.50 for long.

The Homeland Security portion of Obama’s proposed 2010 budget (PDF) includes a plan to raise the fees by an as-yet-undisclosed amount in 2012.

They want to raise the fees because the fees themselves don’t cover the cost of those friendly effective TSA security checkpoints (after all, having a bunch of people standing around doing nothing — a feature I see every time I fly — gets expensive). And I don’t suppose they’ve considered re-privatizing the checkpoints; no, the unions won’t accept that.

So what does this mean? Any of us who fly are going to get soaked here. And I’m sure it will be by a lot more than a dime.

But hey, I’m sure the tourism industry will appreciate Obama’s increased cost of air travel!

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