Is Your State Readying a Tax Day Surprise?

This is a rush transcript from "Glenn Beck," April 9, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GLENN BECK, HOST: More states are looking to raise taxes due to a decrease in tax revenue. That's weird.

So far, at least 10 states are considering a major increase in sales or income tax. They are — get your moving trucks ready — Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Minnesota — wow, all progressive states — New Jersey, Oregon, Washington, Wisconsin — wow, all progressive states!

That's crazy.

Here is David Buckner, professor of organizational leadership at Columbia University.

David, how are you?

DAVID BUCKNER, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY: Good, Glenn. Thanks. Good to see you.

BECK: Just a little cold over there?


BECK: I just want to just go let him sit there for a while because it's freezing in the studio. By the way, that was absolutely high octane jet fuel.

Video: Watch Beck's interview

Dave, as I'm looking at the states that are raising taxes, I'm looking at these and going — they are all the most liberal states, they are — all of them — they have all these programs, now they can't afford it.

At what point do these states just say they failed, they just — there's no more money left.

BUCKNER: Well, at some point they recognize you can't — you can't tax your way out of a recession. You can't. You cannot take money away from the consumers, from small businesses and individuals and assume that things are going to get better. You cannot entice firms to come in if you're going to be taxing them. Firms will look elsewhere.

BECK: OK. Revenue, I read today — revenue for the IRS is down 25 percent.

BUCKNER: Significantly.

BECK: OK. That's bigger than the economy is, right? The economy is down.


BECK: OK, a significant drop in the — revenue to the IRS is down 25 percent.

BUCKNER: And it didn't all come from AIG.

BECK: Right. OK, so that is — that's down 25 percent. Why is it that it seems that progressives and the media understand trickle-down economics when the poor — when the rich lose all their wealth, and then — oh, this is going to hurt the economy — and they understand that 25 percent down in the IRS is happening because the economy is faltering.

Why don't they understand it in the other direction?

BUCKNER: They don't see it in the reverse.

BECK: Why? They are intellectually dishonest.

BUCKNER: Intellectually dishonest. There's also a concept of fairness. And so what they — they don't look at the facts, they don't look at the economics of it. They look at the "fairness." It's not fair that wealthy people make lots of money. So, as long as this trickle-down concept works on one side, we're not going to acknowledge it on the other.

Let me give you an example: I have a colleague of mine in Boston. About October, he quits, shuts down his office, and sends everybody gone until the end of the year. He does it because he can't afford to stay in business. Why? Because he goes into the next bracket. It becomes — he has to work until December 15th before he makes a dime. There is no incentive for him to keep producing.

You look at those states — the states that you've got there — where they have increased taxes, they claim themselves to be progressive states, and you recognize those states are not the ones that are going to be incenting or motivating small businesses. They're not going to be incenting you and I to go to work there. And yet, they don't recognize the incentive process that they're trying to initiate in taxation, the incentive process actually beguiles them and fails rather than supporting them.

BECK: Is it truly just intellectually dishonest or have we missed something? Have we — I am — I am so frustrated because, look, Thomas Jefferson's quote from Peter Carr where he was saying and he was talking about religion, he said, "Fix reason firmly in her seat and question with boldness even the very existence of God; for if there'd be a God, he must surely honor honest questioning over blindfolded fear."

I ask honest questions. I know what I believe. But if I'm wrong, I'll admit it.

Is there anyone with any kind of intellectual honesty that cares about the country?

BUCKNER: There's philosophical differences because they believe and I say "they" generally — those that are in progressive areas that suggest that the government should own larger percentages and tax the wealthy and take it — they believe in redistribution.

BECK: Have they read a history book? It doesn't work, ever.

BUCKNER: You're absolutely right.

BECK: I mean, in Cuba, they were — they're all playing footsie down in Cuba this week, all these progressive Democrats saying, "Oh, he's great, and he's great for the people." They are driving 1950s Ford vehicles.

BUCKNER: 1950s vehicles.


BECK: You know, it's like, wow, you have a color TV? Yes — I mean, it doesn't work.

BUCKNER: It doesn't work. We don't even have examples in the classroom environment. I mean, whether you look at the Soviet Union of the past, you look at Cuba, you look at North Korea, we don't see any examples where this kind of government control and paternalistic ownership and kind of care-giving works.

It doesn't.

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