Topic: Media Research Center
Liz Thatcher marks the 100th anniversary of the federal income tax with a Jan. 30 MRC Business & Media Institute article headlined "10 Achievements America Accomplished Without the Federal Income Tax."
But in focusing only on the income tax, T hatcher conveniently forgets how some of those things were actually accomplished. For instance:
2. Transcontinental Railroad
Steam power was soon put to use on land and railroads began to spring up across the U.S. To span the entire nation from coast to coast, the idea of the Transcontinental Railroad was born. Through the Pacific Railroad Act, the Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroad companies were encouraged to compete to see who could get railroads that connected the east to the west fastest. This took only seven years, and completely transformed America into a unified nation.
As the History.com article Thatcher links to illustrates, the transcontinental railroad was facilitated by a massive government giveaway to the railroads building it:
By the terms of the bill, the Central Pacific Railroad Company would start building in Sacramento and continue east across the Sierra Nevada, while a second company, the Union Pacific Railroad, would build westward from the Missouri River, near the Idaho-Nebraska border. The two lines of track would meet in the middle (the bill did not designate an exact location) and each company would receive 6,400 acres of land (later doubled to 12,800) and $48,000 in government bonds for every mile of track built. From the beginning, then, the building of the transcontinental railroad was set up in terms of a competition between the two companies.
Another item cited by Thatcher:
3. Westward Expansion
Though the left hates the term “Manifest Destiny,” westward expansion helped firmly establish the United States as it is today. It took place as settlers in America decided to pursue the opportunities of owning large amounts of land, farming and settling new towns. It was the ultimate American Dream, and by 1840, nearly 40 percent of the American population had ventured out to explore new territories.
Thatcher doesn't mention that "manifest destiny" also included killing a lot of Native Americans and driving the rest off their land. Is that really a better process than a federal income tax? Thatcher apparently thinks so.