After reading your article on the Nov. 23 front page ("Will Calif. Lead Way In Axing No-Tax Stances?"), I was encouraged by the theme of reversal of tax cut fever that has been abused by politicians over the past few decades. California, unlike Pennsylvania, has a progressive state income tax. From what I understand, the reason that Pennsylvania doesn't have a progressive state income tax is that our state constitution prohibits a tax that doesn't treat all taxpayers equally.
Actually, a progressive tax does treat all taxpayers the same. A high-income individual pays the same rate on his or her lower bracket income as does a lower-income person. Furthermore, lower-income people, should they experience an increase into a higher bracket, would pay the same as the high-income people in that bracket. If Pennsylvania would adopt such a system, it could close the deficit without hurting middle class families.
I feel that a progressive tax structure was essential to the creation of the large middle class of past decades. Sadly politicians find it easier to raise revenue with regressive taxes such as sales taxes. They justify cutting rates on high income by referring to "job creators." One example of these so called job creators is the CEO of Hostess, who asked for a million dollar bonus (please don't raise my taxes!) while dismissing 18,000 employees.