Gene Berkman for Congress

Cut Taxes for Growth

Economic growth is the main issue of the 1996 election. Millions of Americans are unemployed; in Riverside County tens of thousands are out of work. A growing economy will put millions of Americans back to work.

The cost of government is a burden on all Americans. The average working American pays 28% of his or her income in federal taxes, and another 15% in state and local taxes. Government at all levels takes almost half our income in taxes!

The burden of taxation is crushing the civilian economy. When you pay taxes, you have less money for your own needs. You have less money to pay your bills, less money to save, less money to invest. When a business pays taxes, there is less money to pay wages, invest in equipment or invest in new product development.

We can promote real economic growth by cutting back the burden of taxes on businesses and working people. The Libertarian Party calls for real tax relief by elimination of the Federal Income Tax.

Ending the Federal Income Tax would free up a half trillion dollars a year for private investment and personal consumption. Ending the Federal Income Tax would mean thousands of dollars more every year for you and your family.

Restoring Privacy & Liberty

In order to collect the Income Tax, the Internal Revenue Service maintains computer files on every American of working age. The Federal Government knows where you live, where you work, how much you earn and how much you own.

If the IRS accuses you of not paying enough taxes, you can be required to provide additional information on money you have earned and spent over a period of years.

If you are accused of assault, rape, murder or theft, the government has to prove your guilt. If the IRS accuses you of not paying enough taxes, you must prove your innocence. In order to guarantee liberty and privacy to every American, we much abolish the Income Tax and close down the Internal Revenue Service.

Cutting The Government Down to Size

Americans want less government. Republicans won the 1994 elections for Congress because the voters believed they would cut back the government. In reality, the Republicans are continuing the growth of government. Over the past 7 years, the Federal Government has spent $9 trillion. Under the Republican budget plan, the Federal Government will spend $12.1 trillion over the next 7 years - a 35% increase.

The Libertarian Party stands for real cuts in the size and power of the Federal Government. Libertarians propose to end the federal role in welfare, education, law enforcement and public works. By doing so, we can cut the federal budget by $200 billion and return power to the people in their own communities.

Subsidies to big business cost the taxpayers more than $80 billion per year. Let big business pay its own way, and we can cut the budget by another $80 billion.

Farm subsidies mainly go to big corporate farms, not to family farmers. Ending subsidies would restore a free market in food and save $17 billion a year.

Abolition of the Department of Energy would save $4 billion a year, and end government support for nuclear power.

The Debt and the Deficit

In 1980, the National Debt totaled $980 billion. In 8 years, President Ronald Reagan pushed the debt up to $2.6 trillion. In 4 years, President George Bush pushed the debt to $4.1 trillion. The current debt exceeds $5 trillion, and Congress has authorized the government to borrow until the debt reaches $5.5 trillion.

Under the Republican plan to balance the budget by 2002, the Federal Debt will exceed $7 trillion before a balanced budget is reached.

Interest on the National Debt costs the taxpayers more than $300 billion a year, and presents a major obstacle in the way of a balanced budget.

The proposed Liberty Amendment to the Constitution would require that the government sell off assets which are used for un-Constitutional purposes. Income from the sale of government property would be used to pay down the national debt. The U.S. government owns land, buildings and other assets with a value in excess of $4 trillion.

Adoption of the Liberty Amendment provides a way out of the debt trap, and offers annual savings of over $300 billion. Nine state legislatures have endorsed the Liberty Amendment, and I will push for Congress to approve it.

Bring the Troops Home

American taxpayers spend more than $120 billion a year defending Europe and Japan. Europe and Japan can afford to pay for their own defense. If we bring the troops home, we can save $120 billion a year.

The U.S. government sends more than $21 billion a year in aid to foreign governments. So-called "Foreign Aid" promotes socialism and corruption. Ending foreign aid will help balance the federal budget.

Bringing the troops home and ending foreign aid will save money and end the policy of international intervention. We can save more money and preserve American independence by pulling out of the United Nations.

Affordable Health Care

Millions of Americans lack access to affordable health care, and face financial devastation if the come down with a serious illness. People with insurance face loss of coverage if they lose their job, or even if they change jobs. The high costs of medical procedures are reflected in high insurance premiums.

New government programs will not improve access to medical care. In fact, government policies have made medical care more expensive.

Regulations imposed by the Food & Drug Administration make medicines more expensive. To comply with FDA rules, it costs more than $350 million and takes 12 years to develop and test a new drug. We can simplify FDA rules, still require that drugs be proven safe, and cut development and testing costs by as much as 90%. New medicines could be sold for a fraction of their present cost.

FDA regulations impose similar costs on the development of new medical technology. Again, the powers of the FDA could be restricted without endangering the safety of patients, and costs of innovation can be cut.

Liberalizing medical regulations will enable nurses and paramedics to perform many functions now performed by doctors.

Malpractice suits have driven up the cost of medical care. In our major cities, surgeons pay as much as $200,000 a year in malpractice insurance premiums. These premiums drive up the cost of surgery and other medical procedures.

Malpractice law reform would discourage frivolous lawsuits by limiting punitive damage awards. Patients would still be able to recover for actual pain and suffering, but doctors would be charged less for malpractice insurance.

Freedom is the Issue

Downsizing the Federal Government will save money and bring relief to America's taxpayers. Cutting back government power will also restore our lost freedoms.

Freedom means you have the right to do anything you want to do, as long as you don't hurt anybody. The only proper role for government is to protect us from violent crime and theft. My stands on current policy issues all derive from my commitment to personal freedom.

End Draft Registration: We have a volunteer military, but young men are required to register for the draft. Libertarians call for ending Draft Registration, to protect the privacy of millions of young Americans. Rep Calvert has voted to maintain the Draft Registration system; I will vote to end it.

No National Citizen Registry: Rep Ken Calvert has proposed the creation of a National Computer Data Base which would list everyone who has a right to be in the United States. Creation of such a National Citizen Registry would completely eliminate personal privacy in America, and I will fight to oppose all such proposals.

Right to Bear Arms: fully support the Second Amendment and the Right to Bear Arms. I have received an "A" rating from Gun Owners of America. "An unarmed people are slaves, or subject to slavery at any time." Thomas Jefferson.

End Marijuana Prohibition: I support the right of individuals to use marijuana for medical or recreational purposes. Police should protect us from violence and theft, not enforce cultural norms.

War On Drugs: The War On Drugs is an attack on the liberty of all Americans, including people who don't use drugs. Wiretapping, secret informants, asset forfeiture and similar police methods violate the rights of innocent and guilty alike. Drugs should be treated as a medical problem, not a police issue.

Abortion: I believe in and advocate freedom of choice for women and taxpayers. Each woman has a right to control her own body. Taxpayers should not be forced to fund government programs they may consider morally repugnant.

VOTE LIBERTARIAN November 5,1996

President: Harry Browne

U.S. Congress 43rd CD Gene Berkman

State Assembly 64th AD Phil Turner

State Assembly 66th AD Bill Reed