Grover G. Norquist: Tea, Taxes, and the Revolution ... The Founding Fathers Would Revolt If They Saw America’s Tax Burden Today





Grover G. Norquist is president of Americans for Tax Reform and co-author, with John Lott, of Debacle: Obama's War on Jobs and Growth and What We Can Do Now to Regain Our Future.

When demonstrations erupted nationwide in March and April 2009 in opposition to the tax and spending policies of the just-inaugurated Barack Obama administration, the protesters named their movement and cause after the Boston Tea Party of Dec. 16, 1773, when Massachusetts colonists dumped British tea into Boston Harbor in the world's most famous tax revolt. Thus was the "Tea Party" movement reborn.
 
The Tea Party name suggests an anti-tax protest rooted in American history and consistent with the original intent of our nation's founding. If one is grabbing the political high ground in an American debate, this is the equivalent of placing your cannons atop Bunker Hill. (The Tea Party, it is worth noting, is assigning itself the winning team in that previous conflict.)
 
Is the comparison accurate or invented? How does the level and modes of taxation in modern America compare with the taxation of the British colonies, which led to an eight-year war that cost 25,000 American lives and ultimately broke apart the British Empire to create the United States of America? What parallels or paradoxes exist?
 
Americans often observe that our national independence was born of a tax revolt. But taxes, or the lack thereof, played a key role in the colonies long before Samuel Adams and his Sons of Liberty...


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