Increased taxes will increasingly hurt the middle class, the backbone of any economy and nation.
When discussing the depredations of governments on taxpayers, two phrases are commonly used: “killing the goose which lays the golden egg” and “you can’t get blood out of a stone”.
In coronavirus-ravaged South Africa, the geese which laid the golden eggs are becoming few and far between – so many of them have lost their jobs or had their salaries cut drastically. So, there are no more golden eggs.
Yet, as became apparent on Wednesday with Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s “emergency” budget speech, the second phrase needs to be used as a warning to government about its plans to squeeze even more money out of taxpayers. You cannot get blood out of a stone.
There is little these people can do as a class. They are the single biggest source of revenue for the state and their taxes help support millions of people who cannot support themselves.
Increased taxes will increasingly hurt the middle class, the backbone of any economy and nation. Many will be set back considerably on the road to the “better life for all” promised by the ANC.
But the reality is that paying taxes is a privilege. It means you have a job. And that, however small, is a mercy in this difficult world.
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