What do the Missouri Broadcasters’ Association (MBA) radio ads regarding the tax reform proposal known as the Missouri Taxpayer Relief Act (MTRA) and Gone With the Wind have in common? Well, for starters, they are both works of fiction.

Gone with the Wind was based on events immediately prior to, during and immediately following the Civil War. The book and the movie were certainly based on a real event in our history. Some scenes may even portray some of the “conditions” that may have existed as told through the eyes of Margaret Mitchell. To that end, Gone With the Wind appears more factual than the deceptive MBA ads running around the state.

The MBA is running fictional radio ads all across the state against the proposed MTRA. Like all good works of fiction, there is at least a modicum of truth – in this case very little. I’ve been tempted to send an e-mail to MythBusters to put the MBA myths on national TV as being busted but haven’t, yet.

I’m not sure if the ad guys have ever read the proposal for tax reform contained in the MTRA. If they have, they should go to Hollywood and get a job writing for a new science fiction show. Their ability to distort reality is very good and I’m sure they could make a good living at it.

What’s fictional in the ads? I thought you would never ask! The ads claim that from cradle to grave you will be taxed.

  • They claim you will be taxed for having a baby and other healthcare treatments. You won’t!
  • They claim you will be taxed for buying prescription medicines. You won’t!

Had the ad writers read the measure they would have found in Article X, section 1(f)(6) that not only are healthcare services not subject to the sales tax – including birthing babies – neither are prescription drugs! Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt and presume they don’t have access to a dictionary so they can look up the big word “recoupment”.

Recoupment is the recovery of something already expended. It doesn’t mean it was an amount that was not owed or paid. It’s doesn’t mean that a refund of overpayment may be due. Perhaps the ad writers got confused between refunds and recoupment. A refund is not a recoupment. A good dictionary would clear up that problem.

I don’t know about you but I’ve never experienced recoupment of my co-pays. Once I’ve paid them i don’t recover or recoup them.

I’ve never experienced recoupement on my deductibles. My agreement with my insurance carrier says i will pay a certain level of deductible before they pick up their portion. I don’t recover my deductible from the insurance company once I’ve paid it.

The ads claim you will be taxed to die and be buried. Here they have their modicum of truth. It is true that things like caskets and urns would have a sales tax, not much different than today. However, the MBA would falsely have you believe that everything in the burial process would be taxed.

But once again reading the measure does wonders for eliminating fiction. Articke X, section 1(f)(3) and 1(g)(2) clearly state that embalmer and funeral director services won’t be subject to taxes. So not much changes from today

Listening to the ads you would never know that the real reason the MBA is running them is they will be one of the 150 or so special interest exemptions that would be eliminated. Yes advertising will now be subject to sales tax. Wonder why that wasn’t part of the ad?

Frankly Scarlett, the MBA ads just don’t match up with the facts. They are a lot like Scarlett – deceitful and misleading.