In Defense of Pittsburgh’s Proposed Tuition Tax

December 20, 2009

WHO is a fan of taxes? We definitely need to pay something to maintain the roads and for essential services but that’s where most people part ways. A lot of people don’t want their taxes paying for abortions and still more don’t want to pay for defense spending and a sizable vocal opposition want no taxes spent on foreign aid.

The latest tax battleground is taking place in Copenhagen with the proposed implementation of global taxes on carbon emissions administered through the World Bank and IMF. The subject of this blog is not on the merits of the Global Warming debate – I think we’ve all picked a side and we’re entrenched. Time will reveal the true motives.

AND then there is a tax battleground right in my backyard: Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravestahl’s proposed 1% tax on college and university tuitions. He claims that it ‘s needed because of the nonprofits use of essential service and to cover the retired city workers pension fund. This clearly illustrates why I don’t live in the city that created the priviledge tax – yeah, a tax for people that work in the city for the priviledge of having a job in city limits. The city of Pittsburgh, as well as the county it is located in, would tax the amount of steps you take if they could calculate how much those steps wear the walking surface. Pittsburgh is dominated by the University of Pittsburgh and the affiliated University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. They pay no taxes along with the other schools of higher education.

Normally – I’d be opposed to this as just more tax burden; if the city wants to close budget holes, they should start by getting rid of the motor pool that gives out cars for politicians to use or closing up expense accounts. But this is different. Why? Because so much tax policy is created and hatched in academia – cap n’ trade being a prime example. I don’t cast “us versus them” aspersions as I point this out – think about it. If you created policies that you were not subject to or impacted by, how would you know how it felt to be on the receiving end? Working in IT, I can tell you first hand how academia has no understanding of the real world. They can’t. The real world is dynamic where academia is stagnant.

These are the future policy wonks and this 1% is a great illustration of how an out of control, greedy bureaucracy should consider the root cause of financial problems that cities face; a mere $270 dollar reminder every semester of the need for fiscal responsibility.

Don’t forget kids, the second half of the team that you voted for en masse, Vice President Biden’s stance, paying higher taxes is the patriotic thing to do.

Pay up, suckers.

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3 Responses to “In Defense of Pittsburgh’s Proposed Tuition Tax”

  1. Braden Says:

    You hit the nail DIRECTLY on the head. I agree with you. Also, one has to wonder how many of those in academia voted Democrat? I think you and I both know the answer to that one, right?

    Hey, Democrat is where it’s at, right? They make that point abundantly clear every election cycle.

    Like you said, pay up, suckers.

    Well, WELL said.

  2. Braden Says:

    Oh yeah, I’ll be using this piece in a future post as well. It’s that good!

    I will give you a huge H/T of course. 🙂


  3. […] In terms of Pittsburgh’s proposed tuition tax, this guy gets it ALL right. […]


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