With all the hysteria over the Supreme Court upholding what the federal government is already constitutionally empowered to do, namely to tax, the Obamacare tax is far more relevant when viewed in the context of historical tax increases. The Washington Post has an interesting piece on the issue of taxation along with the biggest taxes in US taxing history. Actually, the Washington Post used research compiled by others, who made the above chart, to make an important point.
No, ‘Obamacare’ isn’t ‘the largest tax increase in the history of the world’ (in one chart)
Since the Supreme Court decision, Republicans have been calling the Affordable Care Act “the largest tax increase in the history of the world.” Politifact rates this false. Kevin Drum’s got a table of the 15 significant tax increases since 1950, and the Affordable Care Act, which amounts to a tax increase of 0.49 percent of GDP, comes in 10th. Austin Frakt took Drum’s table and made a chart...The tax increases are instructive on many levels, especially in how taxes are raised to fund the insane wars (welfare for defense contractors).
The largest tax increases were imposed by Truman (Revenue Act of 1950, Revenue Act 1951 and Excess Profits Tax of 1950) to fund the Korean War. Johnson's two taxes, the Temporary Surcharge of 1968 and the Tax Increase of 1966, were imposed on the American people to fund the Vietnam War.
Reagan, revered by Republicans for his extensive taxation and spending, piled on 5 new and substantial tax increases and is probably the biggest taxing president in US history. Reagan taxes:
Tax Increase of 1983
Deficit Reduction Act of 1984
Tax Reform Act of 1986
Budget Reconciliation of 1987
The largest Social Security Tax Hike in US history - the Reagan Social Security Tax of 1983.
Of the 15 top tax hikes, the scorecard is: Truman 3, Johnson 2, Carter 1, Nixon 1, Reagan 5, George H.W. Bush 1, Clinton 1, Obama 1 (of the 15 biggest tax hikes, Obamacare ranks 10th).
For more on the Social Security Tax, see:
Yes My Fellow Americans, Congress Really Did Steal Your Social Security
For more on war expenditures, see:
Yes, America really does spend over 50% of all tax receipts on wars
Clearly, both the Republicans and Democrats are responsible for vastly increasing federal taxes and most of that tax revenue has been spent on the empire and damn wars. But the real issue is that America is broke and bankrupt and we need to make some tough decisions. We can't continue to spend $3.7 trillion on tax revenues of about $2.2 trillion. Something's got to give. Medicare and Medicaid already eat up about $1 trillion a year and it's been reported that entitlements now exceed total federal revenues.
Yes, America is already a socialist nation and has been for decades,despite Republicans who screech their opposition to socialism while actually clamoring for more social spending (Medicare Part D comes to mind). For the Democrats, America just isn't socialist enough and won't be until the government has the power to expropriate 100% of everything from wages to assets and property.
We can continue to blame the governments we elect or we can act responsibly and demand less spending and a balanced budget. After all, we are well on the road to becoming Greece. When the SHTF, life really does become quite miserable.
One final note. Yes, the Republican socialists who sailed into Congress after the 2010 GOP general election sweep actually spent more money than the Dems they replaced.
The Tea Party Republicans Spent More Than the Dems They Replaced
And let us not forget that while Republicans are suddenly screaming about the debt, the Republicans were in fact responsible for most of the debt until Obama arrived to level the playing field in the never ending game of "Who can bankrupt America the fastest?".