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Phrost
5th November 04, 10:45 PM
November 3, 2004

Reform Is On the Way?
Tax Policy and the 2004 Elections

By Scott A. Hodge

What do Tuesday’s election results mean for tax policy over the next four years? It can be summarized in two words: permanence and reform.

Expect George W. Bush and the 109th Congress to move quickly next year to make the President’s tax cuts permanent. At varying times over the next six years, all of the major components of the President’s tax cuts will either sunset or diminish in value. For example, the 15 percent tax rates on capital gains and dividends are scheduled to sunset on December 31, 2008. Two years later, at midnight on December 31, 2010, the remaining components of the Bush tax cuts—the lower individual income tax rates, the child credit and marriage penalty relief—will expire and revert to the tax law that was in effect in 2000. Making these tax cuts permanent will not only avoid a massive tax hike for Americans, but will bring badly needed stability to the tax code and allow taxpayers to plan for the long term.

While Bush was quite forceful throughout the campaign in his desire to reform the tax code, he was coy about indicating which of the various reform plans he favors – a flat income tax, a national retail sales tax, or another type of consumption tax.

The problem with Bush’s desire to overhaul the income tax is that the last four years of tax cuts have made the task of reform more difficult. Despite the charges of critics, Bush’s tax cuts were very successful in eliminating the tax burden for low and middle-income taxpayers while shifting the tax burden to the so-called rich.

Indeed, this year a record 44 million Americans will file tax returns but pay no income taxes after they have taken advantage of credits and deductions while millions more will owe next to nothing. As a result, the wealthiest 20 percent of taxpayers (those earning more than roughly $68,000 per year) will pay a record 82 percent of all income taxes.

Here’s the dilemma for Bush’s tax team: If the goal of fundamental tax reform is to expand the tax base while lowering tax rates, how do you craft a tax reform plan that (1) doesn’t raise taxes on the 44 million low-income Americans who now pay nothing and (2) doesn’t “cut taxes for the rich” who now pay everything? There is no easy answer, especially if the administration is committed to enacting tax reform in a revenue neutral manner.

One thing the administration can do to counter the “tax cuts for the rich” charges that dominated this year’s election is better educate the public on who the so-called rich are today. The wealthiest 20 percent of taxpayers are overwhelmingly comprised of dual-income working couples and business owners. These taxpayers are now the new “middle-class.” The statistical middle 20 percent of taxpayers, the group that politicians claim to want to help, is now overwhelmingly comprised of single individuals, not traditional married couples.

While the changing demographics of the American taxpayer will make the task of crafting and selling fundamental tax reform much more challenging, the long-term benefits that reform will bring to the American economy are worth the effort.

http://www.taxfoundation.org/2004elections.html

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Now please note the bold text, my emphasis.

Anyone who thinks that you should pay more in taxes than the next guy because you make more money is no better than someone who expects his wealthy brother who went to college while he sat on his ass at home, to pay his bills "cause he's got money".

katana
5th November 04, 10:52 PM
Phrost you can't make that font big enough to get some of these people to understand what we've been saying all along. If you let politicians define the word "rich" you'll find out one day that they mean everybody who works.

The Wastrel
5th November 04, 10:54 PM
[i]November 3, 2004

Anyone who thinks that you should pay more in taxes than the next guy because you make more money is no better than someone who expects his wealthy brother who went to college while he sat on his ass at home, to pay his bills "cause he's got money".

I think you phrased this wrong. I think I should pay more in taxes than someone who makes much less than me. This makes me a bad person how?

Thaiboxerken
5th November 04, 10:55 PM
I'm all for the tax cut. This stupid war and the diminishment of my civil rights are a big issue though.

The Wastrel
5th November 04, 11:05 PM
A question: You don't believe in progressive taxation?

Another question: Do you approve of Reagan's tax policy? (katana should know why I'm asking this.)

Phrost
5th November 04, 11:16 PM
Not familiar with Reagan's tax policy.

willy
6th November 04, 03:10 AM
I think you phrased this wrong. I think I should pay more in taxes than someone who makes much less than me. This makes me a bad person how?


it doesn't make you a bad person for wanting to pay more taxes, that's a personal choice. but if you decree that I should pay more taxes because YOU think i can afford them then you are taking my choice away. generally i'd consider that "bad"

Phrost
6th November 04, 09:03 AM
Well said. You want to dip into my pocket to support your government programs you'd better be willing to pay the exact same share I am. The only fair way of doing this is a flat tax.

Thaiboxerken
6th November 04, 01:19 PM
As taxes go, I can agree. Why should I be forced to pay charity for Welfar programs, if I don't give a fuck about them?

I'm a fiscal conservative.

The Wastrel
6th November 04, 03:23 PM
you'd better be willing to pay the exact same share I am.

That's unpossible. How are they going to pay the same share? Do you mean the same RATE? Anyway, you're forgetting that Social Security amounts to a regressive tax (http://www.mises.org/econsense/ch18.asp). By that measure, lower wage earners pay a larger percentage of their income in taxes than do the upper brackets, unless you believe Social Security is a "lockbox". This is what I meant by Reagan's tax policy. He raised Social Security withholding, which topped out at the time around 62,000 dollars. This allowed him to make up the shortfall created by his upper income bracket tax cuts, while middle class wage earners saw their total withholdings increase by some 300%. He proceeded to spend that, as has every president after him.



Why should I be forced to pay charity for Welfar[e] programs, if I don't give a fuck about them?

This argument is basically incoherent, though. No one is letting those Americans who think war is immoral refuse to pay taxes to support it.

Phrost
6th November 04, 03:46 PM
False Analogy.

People aren't being expected to perform extra military service just because they're better physical specimens.

Nobody's arguing that there should or shouldn't be a tax. We're arguing that paying a larger percentage simply because we earn more is unfair.

The Wastrel
6th November 04, 03:51 PM
False Analogy.

People aren't being expected to perform extra military service just because they're better physical specimens.

Nobody's arguing that there should or shouldn't be a tax. We're arguing that paying a larger percentage simply because we earn more is unfair.


Um, no. It's not a false analogy. You made the same argument re: abortion or something or other, saying that people shouldn't have to pay taxes on things they think are immoral. People pay taxes, and those taxes go to support the programs that the government creates. If you don't like it, you vote, complain, etc., but there is no getting out of paying taxes for something because it offends your personal morality.

But the language here is getting confusing. What percentage are we talking about here? The percentage of your wage? The percentage of the overall burden?

Phrost
6th November 04, 04:28 PM
Um, no. It's not a false analogy. You made the same argument re: abortion or something or other, saying that people shouldn't have to pay taxes on things they think are immoral. People pay taxes, and those taxes go to support the programs that the government creates. If you don't like it, you vote, complain, etc., but there is no getting out of paying taxes for something because it offends your personal morality.

But the language here is getting confusing. What percentage are we talking about here? The percentage of your wage? The percentage of the overall burden?

You miss the part about the Flat Tax? That's pretty obvious what I'm talking about. This particular topic is about the implied obligation for the rich to shoulder a larger percentage of their income (and don't fucking bring up off-shore bullshit, we're talking absolutes here) than someone working at Burger King.


Let's take this a different route.

I'd like to see you justify a graduated tax plan wherein the more money you make, the more money you pay, as being just.

Thaiboxerken
6th November 04, 04:30 PM
This argument is basically incoherent, though. No one is letting those Americans who think war is immoral refuse to pay taxes to support it.

But we should. I don't agree with taxes for many of these things.

Thaiboxerken
6th November 04, 04:31 PM
I'd rather see a flat-tax program, where everyone pays the same percentage of their income with NO tax breaks. That would be fair. Right now, the more income you have, the higher percentage you are penalized.

DJeter1234
6th November 04, 04:42 PM
but you still have an incentive to make more money. It's not like someone making less money will ever get more money after taxes than someone making more money. So what's so wrong about that extra penalization from an economics standpoint?

Btw, this is actually a question, so if someone could answer it and not argue against it it would be appreciated.

Phrost
6th November 04, 04:47 PM
Nothing. From an economics standpoint, there's nothing wrong with Communism.

I just don't want my country using either.

Wounded Ronin
6th November 04, 04:49 PM
Not even....1960s Godless Communism?

Kein Haar
6th November 04, 04:56 PM
I think I should pay more in taxes than someone who makes much less than me.

Are we talking about federal income tax?

Nothing wrong with that at all.

A flat tax would not stop you from cutting a personal check whenever you like.

Thaiboxerken
6th November 04, 05:08 PM
So what's so wrong about that extra penalization from an economics standpoint?


Nothing is wrong with it from an economics standpoint. From an ethics standpoint, I think it's wrong and unfair.



A flat tax would not stop you from cutting a personal check whenever you like.

This is very true.

The Wastrel
6th November 04, 05:50 PM
You miss the part about the Flat Tax? That's pretty obvious what I'm talking about. This particular topic is about the implied obligation for the rich to shoulder a larger percentage of their income (and don't fucking bring up off-shore bullshit, we're talking absolutes here) than someone working at Burger King.


Let's take this a different route.

I'd like to see you justify a graduated tax plan wherein the more money you make, the more money you pay, as being just.


First off, social security amounts to a regressive tax. People get away with saying that the rich pay more because they don't count social security as a tax. We all know it is;we all know it's a Ponzi scheme and it's going bye-bye.

Second, I'm cautiously supportive of a flat tax rate, but I don't see how you can say we shouldn't give a break to people who are earning below the poverty rate.

Let's also be clear that the point of the flat tax is not just to even out the income tax rates, but to eliminate taxes on other sources of income. That I don't support, except for the case of the estate tax. That needs to go.

Believe me, I know all about what it's like to suddenly move into a new bracket and find the government taking a huge bite; a bite that could have made the difference between comfort, and just this side of struggling.

The Wastrel
6th November 04, 05:52 PM
Nothing. From an economics standpoint, there's nothing wrong with Communism.


Is this a joke?

Phrost
6th November 04, 06:31 PM
Is this a joke?

On a small scale, Communism works. Look at the Israeli Kibutz as an example. A strong sense of community bonds keeps it going more than anything else, but it does work.

As an economic system for a nation, of course, it's garbage. It takes fascism in order to enforce and creates its own set of classes in a so-called "classeless" system.

The Wastrel
6th November 04, 06:34 PM
On a small scale, Communism works. Look at the Israeli Kibutz as an example. A strong sense of community bonds keeps it going more than anything else, but it does work.

As an economic system for a nation, of course, it's garbage. It takes fascism in order to enforce and creates its own set of classes in a so-called "classeless" system.

Well, on a small-scale you still have the operation of self-interest by participants, and the complexity of central planning is a non-issue.

I'm just saying that the fundamental assumptions of economics are innately market-ish.

Thaiboxerken
6th November 04, 08:04 PM
I don't see how you can say we shouldn't give a break to people who are earning below the poverty rate.

I don't see why you would want to.

Deadpan Scientist
6th November 04, 09:11 PM
BECAUSE THEY ARE BELOW THE POVERTY LINE

Alex
6th November 04, 10:00 PM
thats the problem with america, the whole idea that people are poor because they want to be. fuck off. the poor get worse and the rich dont give a fuck, at least in countries with a welfare system they dont have to resort to crime for money.

and can someone explain why he is proposing tax cuts when americas economy is down the toilet?

Deadpan Scientist
6th November 04, 10:01 PM
It's to increase consumer spending.

PeedeeShaolin
6th November 04, 11:13 PM
I'm all for helping people who need it, but what Phrost says is pretty clear:

Its just fine and dandy to want to help people, but you shouldn't be FORCED to. I have to agree with him. If you analyzed it enough it would come down to an issue of morality and who exactly is the one who legislates that? I thought that 's what CHURCH is for, isn't it?

And dont get me wrong, I happen to believe that the whole line of "Do your best and you get whats coming to you" is absolute bullshit. That CAN happen, and in this country it DOES happen MOST of the time, but things happen that people just cant plan for.

There are times when "personal responsibility" sounds like just another cop-out. The world is an imperfect place. It would take one catastrophic illness to destroy anyones life on this forum. You just cant plan for that and I think its a credit to our society and example to the rest of the world that we RECOGNIZE this and provide help to people who honestly need it when they do.

But the older I get the more I think that alot of these people DONT need the help and they're just enjoying a free ride. How is that going to help our country in any way?

As far as taxes go, it IS strange that so much of our money goes to helping OTHER countires in the form of re-building Iraq, handing out major cash to the Israelis even though they're one of the wealthiest people......but only when it comes to helping out AMERICANS do most people get angry and not want their tax dollars taken from them. Thats the one part I dont understand.

Regardless of how you feel, we live in a democracy(almost) and it would appear that the people are FOR less taxes. This is the way it is and if thats what the majority wants then thats how it should be.

One last note:

The term "poverty" here is pretty misleading. We live in the richest country in the world...what kind of poverty are we really talking about? Johnny couldn't get the new Gameboy? Dial up instead of broadband?

I would bet that nobody here has ever really had to worry about food or a warm bed and pretty much ANYONE can find a job. It might not be the type of job they want but when push comes to shove you can find a way to feed yourself and your family in this country.

People watch too much TV and get eaten ALIVE by the DISEASE of consuming. They see that new TV and if they cant have it something must be WRONG!

Bullshit.

Not having an air conditioner in the summertime is not poverty...living in the box it came in is poverty.

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 01:06 AM
BECAUSE THEY ARE BELOW THE POVERTY LINE

And your point is?

Deadpan Scientist
7th November 04, 01:18 AM
It's the right thing to do.

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 01:21 AM
It's the right thing to do.

Only in your opinion.

PeedeeShaolin
7th November 04, 01:22 AM
It IS the right thing to do.....but is FORCING someone to do the right thing legal?

I believe its the MORAL thing to do, but how do you force your morality on someone who doesn't think the same way you do?

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 01:26 AM
I think making fun of fat people is the right thing to do, should we make it a legal obligation for all people to do it?

Deadpan Scientist
7th November 04, 01:32 AM
Only in your opinion.

Yeah, I guess you're right, I'm just a bleeding heart for people that can barely afford food and shelter for their families.

Deadpan Scientist
7th November 04, 01:35 AM
I think making fun of fat people is the right thing to do, should we make it a legal obligation for all people to do it?
No fat people are lacking in a basic necessity of life (food, water, shelter) because someone didn't make fun of them.

With poor people, some will probably end up lacking one of those necessities due to increased taxation.

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 01:52 AM
Yeah, I guess you're right, I'm just a bleeding heart for people that can barely afford food and shelter for their families.

Yep. And I'm not.

willy
7th November 04, 04:50 AM
the way the money is spent is not the real issue( although it is a large issue, and better spending practices could reduce the burden on everybody, no matter what the tax scheme) the actual issue is- why does a person who makes more money have a greater obligation to pay than those making less? can you give a morally justified answer to this?

i don't expect my higher paid friends to pick up my part of the tab when we go to eat.
you'd be pissed if you went to buy a car and were asked twice the sticker price because the dealer thinks you can afford it. so why do you think it is okay for your government to screw people?

The Wastrel
7th November 04, 11:31 AM
If you make 100,000 dollars a year, and you're pissed off that someone making 10,000 dollars a year doesn't pay income tax (but continues to pay social security withholding, which is a regressive tax) you're a small-minded, greedy person.

willy
7th November 04, 11:57 AM
it may be small minded and greedy, or it may be that i belive i can use my money more efficently by donating to a local charity or taking care of my friends and family. either way it's MY money, earned by MY work you should not able to dispence it as you deem fit just because you don't have enough to do what you wish.

Phrost
7th November 04, 12:20 PM
Fine Wastrel.

They don't get to vote unless they pay taxes. No representation without taxation.

Alex
7th November 04, 01:48 PM
I wonder if your viewpoint would be different if you got a bout of bad luck and lost everything. would you then think its still fair to tax people the same amount?

the standard of living people in the west have comes mainly from taxing the rich. why tax the poor people when they are already struggling? you NEED a new mercedes? personally I would rather have a safety net there if I ever fall into poverty.

A.D.D
7th November 04, 02:24 PM
It IS the right thing to do.....but is FORCING someone to do the right thing legal?

I believe its the MORAL thing to do, but how do you force your morality on someone who doesn't think the same way you do?

Become President.

Phrost
7th November 04, 02:31 PM
I wonder if your viewpoint would be different if you got a bout of bad luck and lost everything. would you then think its still fair to tax people the same amount?

the standard of living people in the west have comes mainly from taxing the rich. why tax the poor people when they are already struggling? you NEED a new mercedes? personally I would rather have a safety net there if I ever fall into poverty.

Fine. They don't get to vote.

Fair trade.

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 02:31 PM
If you make 100,000 dollars a year, and you're pissed off that someone making 10,000 dollars a year doesn't pay income tax (but continues to pay social security withholding, which is a regressive tax) you're a small-minded, greedy person.

Ahh, this is some great logic. If you don't agree with me, you are a (insert insult).

Nice.

How about this? If you make over 100K a yr, you should buy me a car. If you don't, you are a small-minded and greedy person.

Let's be fair, let's have a flat-tax rate on all persons. A person that makes 10K/ yr paying 15% of his income is still paying about 10 times less the amount of taxes a person making 100K/yr paying the same tax rate.

So, the person making 10K/yr is getting a break on taxes because he makes less.

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 02:33 PM
personally I would rather have a safety net there if I ever fall into poverty.

Me too, oh wait, I do. It's called "savings account".

The Wastrel
7th November 04, 04:07 PM
Ahh, this is some great logic. If you don't agree with me, you are a (insert insult).

Nice.

How about this? If you make over 100K a yr, you should buy me a car. If you don't, you are a small-minded and greedy person.

Let's be fair, let's have a flat-tax rate on all persons. A person that makes 10K/ yr paying 15% of his income is still paying about 10 times less the amount of taxes a person making 100K/yr paying the same tax rate.

So, the person making 10K/yr is getting a break on taxes because he makes less.

TBK, I was trying to make point. Although I do believe that being outraged about someone who is a member of the working dirt-poor getting a tax break is...uncharitable, at the very least.

As for the flat tax, I already covered it.


Second, I'm cautiously supportive of a flat tax rate, but I don't see how you can say we shouldn't give a break to people who are earning below the poverty rate.

Let's also be clear that the point of the flat tax is not just to even out the income tax rates, but to eliminate taxes on other sources of income. That I don't support, except for the case of the estate tax. That needs to go.

The entire taxation question invokes the concept of discretionary income. At 12-15k a year your discretionary income is nil; any tax you pay comes right out of money that you need to actually obtain the basic necessities. The argument is that if you're having trouble just paying rent, buying food, getting around, and maintaining a wardrobe that can keep you employed, taking 15% of that would be just cruel.

This basically treats as income only that money you earn over a certain basic cost of living level. I'm entirely comfortable with this, morally and logically.

It's my opinion however that everyone who is earning a wage should pay some sort of taxes; I believe it might foster some sense of involvement.

However, everyone keeps ducking the question of Social Security. I notice that when they're discussing the need to get rid of it, conservatives call it a tax, but when we're talking about the contributions of the poor, it's not a tax. Which is it?

PeedeeShaolin
7th November 04, 04:09 PM
However, everyone keeps ducking the question of Social Security. I notice that when they're discussing the need to get rid of it, conservatives call it a tax, but when we're talking about the contributions of the poor, it's not a tax. Which is it?

I'd like to read an attempted response to this one......

DJeter1234
7th November 04, 05:13 PM
question:

would eliminating the tax-brakes for those under the poverty level and raising the minimum wage cancel each other out? What, if any, are the economic differences between minimum wage and tax exemption.

Thaiboxerken
7th November 04, 06:08 PM
TBK, I was trying to make point. Although I do believe that being outraged about someone who is a member of the working dirt-poor getting a tax break is...uncharitable, at the very least.

Charity should not be forced.



The entire taxation question invokes the concept of discretionary income. At 12-15k a year your discretionary income is nil; any tax you pay comes right out of money that you need to actually obtain the basic necessities.

I doubt it, e-1's in the military seem to get by, by having roommates and being more sensible with what little money they get. Of course making a low income means you won't have luxuries, but that doesn't mean these people should be exempt from paying taxes so that they can afford luxuries like TV's and airconditioning. You may think these people should be given a break, I think they already have more than enough "breaks" in the USA.

Heck, i have to pay full tuition for my wife's college courses because we make too much money. These low-income scholarships and grants aren't even being utilized by the poverty ridden people, but they won't allow us "rich" folk to touch it. This tells me that poverty is more the fault of those that suffer it than most want to even think.

The Wastrel
7th November 04, 06:57 PM
Charity should not be forced.

You're talking about welfare then.




I doubt it, e-1's in the military seem to get by, by having roommates and being more sensible with what little money they get.

Um...maybe it's because they don't have to pay for food or rent?


Of course making a low income means you won't have luxuries, but that doesn't mean these people should be exempt from paying taxes so that they can afford luxuries like TV's and airconditioning.

If that's what you think, then you're the one who's been sheltered, not them.


You may think these people should be given a break, I think they already have more than enough "breaks" in the USA.

By that logic, so do you, and so does anyone. So they can quit whining about their taxes.


Heck, i have to pay full tuition for my wife's college courses because we make too much money. These low-income scholarships and grants aren't even being utilized by the poverty ridden people, but they won't allow us "rich" folk to touch it. This tells me that poverty is more the fault of those that suffer it than most want to even think.

So I'm confused...you wanted the aid, but because you make too much to qualify, you oppose it now?

willy
8th November 04, 02:35 AM
personally I would rather have a safety net there if I ever fall into poverty.

a good health insurance plan and a decent investing portfolio are not that hard to invest in, on top of that you have family, friends, and private charity that will help out those down on thier luck. safety nets are there it just takes a little foresight.

Thaiboxerken
8th November 04, 12:25 PM
Um...maybe it's because they don't have to pay for food or rent?

They don't have to, but they still do. They get places outside of the base that requires rent and they often buy their own food because eating free requires going to the base. Many e-1's take on roommates and make sacrifices so they can afford to party as well.



If that's what you think, then you're the one who's been sheltered, not them.

Strange, because my parents made a combined income of less than 15K a year.



By that logic, so do you, and so does anyone. So they can quit whining about their taxes.

Your rebuttle makes no logical sense at all.



So I'm confused...you wanted the aid, but because you make too much to qualify, you oppose it now?

No, I think that it should be available to everyone on an equal basis. After all, my taxes paid for it.

afronaut
8th November 04, 08:13 PM
Fine Wastrel.

They don't get to vote unless they pay taxes. No representation without taxation.

Fortunately the authors of the Constitution felt differently.

afronaut
8th November 04, 08:31 PM
I regret that I am coming to this dance late.

The old saw that the wealthy pay all the taxes has a few problems with it.
1) They pay more income tax. Not payroll tax. There is a difference. With payrol taxes factored in, the "woe is to the stock broker" arguments slow down a bit.
2) The rest of the tax structure is weighted against the middle income and the poor. The relatively low tax on capital gains, the ability for the wealthy to hide money from taxation, the relatively few deductions available to the poor (or low threshold) all hit the poor and middle income people disproporationally. If Congress were to pass, say, a flat tax, in exchange for an "adjustment" of capital gains and the like, would that be agreeable to all? Only people making over $200,000 per year answer this one.

You don't feel you should have to pay for helping the poor? OK. But we have to pay for things we don't like all the time. Missile defense, subsidies for car companies and agribusiness, etc. You are welcome to disagree with these expenditures and lobby to have Congress change them, but it doesn't make something automatically bad just because you don't like it. That's what happens in a plularistic democracy. You are always going to be paying for someone else's shit.

afronaut
8th November 04, 08:39 PM
Second, and this relates especially to anything dealing with the poor: pay for them now or pay for them later. You may not like having to pay for poor people, subsidize their food and shelter and medical care, or their education. But if you don't pay a little in social services you are going to pay a LOT on the other end. Jails, police, etc. It's not philosophically or morally pretty, but I think it's the truth.

Third, if you abandon the notion of pooling resoruces for the collective good, then do you also abandon the military, the public education system, federal scientific research and all the other things that we do with tax money? It sounds simplicitic, but think of it this way: If you start "taking you ball and going home", where does it stop?

Fourth, why do peopel only get worked up about the poor? No one gets into a lather about those mooching farmers with their wheat subsidies or the space program or the defense procurement process or the bureau of prisons or any one of a zillion things that our taxes go to, why the poor?

Why does it seem like the most offensive thing you can do with public money is feed or clothe someone?

afronaut
8th November 04, 08:41 PM
a good health insurance plan and a decent investing portfolio are not that hard to invest in, on top of that you have family, friends, and private charity that will help out those down on thier luck. safety nets are there it just takes a little foresight.

Well, sure. Homeless? Stay in your summer home! Broke, can't feed your kids, why don't you dip into that boat fund or stock split you've been saving for after Ted and Anne graduate from Vassar?

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 11:53 AM
Fortunately the authors of the Constitution felt differently.

Yea, but some of their ideas are a little outdated.

The Wastrel
9th November 04, 11:55 AM
This just in: Libertarians say you should pay for the right to vote.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 12:00 PM
The old saw that the wealthy pay all the taxes has a few problems with it.
1) They pay more income tax. Not payroll tax. There is a difference. With payrol taxes factored in, the "woe is to the stock broker" arguments slow down a bit.

I doubt it, do you have evidence to support this assertion? Does it really matter? Shouldn't people be treated fairly and equally, instead of being punished for being successful?


2) The rest of the tax structure is weighted against the middle income and the poor. The relatively low tax on capital gains, the ability for the wealthy to hide money from taxation, the relatively few deductions available to the poor (or low threshold) all hit the poor and middle income people disproporationally. If Congress were to pass, say, a flat tax, in exchange for an "adjustment" of capital gains and the like, would that be agreeable to all? Only people making over $200,000 per year answer this one.

Why only those that make over 200K/year? I am affected by capital gains tax as well, I play the stock game. Middle-class people are allowed to invest in stocks. Yes, I would like a flat tax with NO tax breaks.


You don't feel you should have to pay for helping the poor? OK. But we have to pay for things we don't like all the time. Missile defense, subsidies for car companies and agribusiness, etc. You are welcome to disagree with these expenditures and lobby to have Congress change them, but it doesn't make something automatically bad just because you don't like it. That's what happens in a plularistic democracy. You are always going to be paying for someone else's shit.

Hey, asshole, most of us understand this. We just don't agree with it, it is still our right to voice our opinions on how unfair we think taxes are and disagree with how those taxes are spent.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 12:05 PM
Why does it seem like the most offensive thing you can do with public money is feed or clothe someone?

I don't think anyone is really saying it's offensive to help the poor. What's offensive is forcing people to help the poor.

Onecardshort
9th November 04, 12:18 PM
I know this is essentially a US vs US thread, but I find the "charity" concept when relating to social care quite amusing. It's always amazing how something is described can be used to either increase or decrease it's standing in the public eye. As an example, in the UK it is always "investment" in roads and "subsidies" to public transport - which has led to an interesting problem in our infrastructure.

In a similar manner, equating social care with "charity" is rather misleading and belittling. Charity implies you give something with no expected return. By enabling poorer sections of society some support through tax, you are getting a return as a society. You're (hopefully) expanding the potential well of educated workers and, just as importantly, removing a potential threat to your own livelihood by ensuring even the poor have a vested stake in the status quo.

Ensuring the wealth gap remains within reasonable grounds isn't charity, it's common sense for a society that wants to continue.

OK, shutting up now

The Wastrel
9th November 04, 12:21 PM
I don't think anyone is really saying it's offensive to help the poor. What's offensive is forcing people to help the poor.


http://bullshido.net/forums/showthread.php?t=18439

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 12:31 PM
By enabling poorer sections of society some support through tax, you are getting a return as a society.

Those fuckers should be washing my car then.

afronaut
9th November 04, 02:28 PM
I doubt it, do you have evidence to support this assertion? Does it really matter? Shouldn't people be treated fairly and equally, instead of being punished for being successful?

Yes people should be treated fairly and equally. I was just pointing out that while the poor pay little in income tax, they pay their share of payroll taxes.

Also, no one is being punished for being successful. Does anyone ever say "I was going to be a rich bank executive, but the taxes would eat me alive. Now I suck dick for crack."? It doesn't seem to be deterring anyone from succeeding.

Some see it as a duty. And that other dude on the thread pointed out that social spending can be seen as an investment. Help a child out of poverty or into good health, that's one less child or family on the dole, committing crimes, going to the emergency room for primary care, etc.


Why only those that make over 200K/year? I am affected by capital gains tax as well, I play the stock game. Middle-class people are allowed to invest in stocks. Yes, I would like a flat tax with NO tax breaks.

I put in that proviso so that rich folks nutriders wouldn't say "Hell yeah!" out of reflex. Not to rule out middle class shareholders. My mistake.


Hey, asshole, most of us understand this. We just don't agree with it, it is still our right to voice our opinions on how unfair we think taxes are and disagree with how those taxes are spent.
Easy there, Bolo. No one threw a punch at you. I'll use my inside voice if you will.

afronaut
9th November 04, 02:30 PM
Those fuckers should be washing my car then.

That's what all those guys with squeegies are doing. They just want to pitch in ...

afronaut
9th November 04, 02:35 PM
I don't think anyone is really saying it's offensive to help the poor. What's offensive is forcing people to help the poor.

An honest question, really: Do you think that the government shouldn't be allowed to collect any taxes?

Dochter
9th November 04, 02:43 PM
The best argument about flat taxes (more specifcally not taxing those in poverty) is given in a standup routine by Chris Rock about why it is the poor that need pre-nups and not the wealthy. Seriously.

Those of you who don't think there should be a floor somewhere one question:
Does a payment of 15% affect someone making 15k/yr the same as it does someone making 150k/yr?

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 03:49 PM
An honest question, really: Do you think that the government shouldn't be allowed to collect any taxes?

Yes, I don't think the government should be allowed to collect taxes.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 03:50 PM
Those of you who don't think there should be a floor somewhere one question:
Does a payment of 15% affect someone making 15k/yr the same as it does someone making 150k/yr?

Nope, it affects them 15K/yr person less, about 10 times less.

The Wastrel
9th November 04, 03:57 PM
Nope, it affects them 15K/yr person less, about 10 times less.

Hello, discretionary income?

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 03:59 PM
2,250 versus 22,500. I'd say the wealthier person is affected more.

DJeter1234
9th November 04, 04:05 PM
are you aquainted with the parymid of needs? You do understand, in general, what they are talking about, no? If so, please stop being pedantic.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 04:11 PM
Flat tax or no tax. That's my opinion. No tax breaks for anyone for any reason.

I understand the argument that Wastrel is putting up, I don't agree with it. If they can't afford rent, get a roommate. If they can't afford food, go on a diet.

There are way too many fat welfare people in existence for me to buy into the arguments about poor people needing breaks from taxes to help pay for food.

DJeter1234
9th November 04, 04:26 PM
here's the thing: I think everyone her acknoledges there are problems with the welfare system as it is right now. That's not the point. Attacking it is just a strawman.

The question is whether any welfare system should be in place. You can argue that any welfare system has unforgivable flaws, and that is a valid arguement, althoguh i disagree. but :

There are way too many fat welfare people in existence for me to buy into the arguments about poor people needing breaks from taxes to help pay for food.
is a logical fallacy.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 04:29 PM
Simply saying that it's a logical fallacy doesn't make it so. Exactly where is the fallacy in my statement?

I'll revise to take the "welfare"out of it. There are way too many fat, poor people for me to think that they need tax breaks to help pay for food necessities.

DJeter1234
9th November 04, 04:33 PM
we are arguing about any potential welfare system. What your saying is tantamount to saying "The French Revolution's attempt at bottom-up government was a faliure, so therefore any government that tries to get its authority from the people will fail"

edit: again, you can argue that there are quite a few welfare systems in the world, and they all promote this kind of waste, but you can't just say "there is waste in our wwelfare system, therefor no one realy needs it and every welfare system will produce this sort of waste

afronaut
9th November 04, 05:09 PM
Yes, I don't think the government should be allowed to collect taxes.

What about all the good tax-funded projects do? Haven't things like public education, the Internet, the highway system, the FDA and so forth, more than paid for themselves?

Omar
9th November 04, 06:06 PM
As taxes go, I can agree. Why should I be forced to pay charity for Welfar programs, if I don't give a fuck about them?

I'm a fiscal conservative.

Why should I be forced to pay for this fucking war? It cost a hell of a lot more than any social wellfare program. The biggest charity programs are not food stamps, they are corporate. To complain that a graduated income tax is dipping into YOUR pocket to pay for some wellfare chump is disingenuous to say the least. Although, honestly, income tax is regressive to begin with as the higher your income bracket, the less dependent you are on a paycheck and the more of your income comes from capital gains, real estate, dividends or other business deals.

But the flat tax issue is where you really show your ignorance. 15% of your income at 15,000/year can be the difference between rent or no rent for the month. At 200,000 it's your weekend trip to Vegas.

Stop pretending that the new tax programs mean less income redistribution.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 06:57 PM
What about all the good tax-funded projects do? Haven't things like public education, the Internet, the highway system, the FDA and so forth, more than paid for themselves?

Sure they have, but a free-market could've produced these things as well.


Why should I be forced to pay for this fucking war?

You shouldn't.


15% of your income at 15,000/year can be the difference between rent or no rent for the month. At 200,000 it's your weekend trip to Vegas.

It can also mean the difference between spending income on crack-cocaine instead of rent. A flat-tax rate still means that the wealthy are paying more taxes.

Dochter
9th November 04, 07:13 PM
2,250 versus 22,500. I'd say the wealthier person is affected more.
Wow. Are you just being argumentative or do you really think that.

Seriously, watch some Chris Rock from about 6 years ago. That's my speed, maybe it will work for you to.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 10:06 PM
I'd say 22.5K is a very large sum. Is there some mythical energy that makes money less valuable when you have more of it?

DJeter1234
9th November 04, 10:18 PM
It depends on how you measure it. Obviously if you just measure it in $$'s, there's no arguement. But if you measure it in purchasing power reletive to what one usually purchases, then yes, 22.5K can have different values to different people.

Are you a troll?

The Wastrel
9th November 04, 10:29 PM
Sure they have, but a free-market could've produced these things as well.

No. A free market will never produce roads, for example. Public goods are underprovided. This is not radicalism. It is basic economics, and a consequence of the enlightened self-interest assumptions that go back as far as Adam Smith.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 10:34 PM
So you don't think a company would start selling roads? Why is that?

DJeter1234
9th November 04, 10:43 PM
to whom? If they sold to the government, hey, they already do. If they sold to the consumers,they woudl somehow have to make sure that people who didn't pay didn;t use them, and that would prob require more money than they could get from charging people for raods, at least with curent technology.

And if they forced everyone to pay, hey, that would be a tax! Plus, who decides what companies build where? If a company owns all the land around you house, do you have to either pay them or never elave your house?

Just a few reasons off the top of my head, i'm sure someone who has studied it would know more.

Thaiboxerken
9th November 04, 10:55 PM
Sell roads to other companies, of course. There are toll roads in use today, FYI, albeit run by the gov't. They wouldn't force everyone to pay, just the people that want to use the road, so it's not a tax. If the company owns all the land around my house, I better have a good relationship with that company. However, I do see your point. There are some things that I agree a government should be in charge of, like public roads. I also think our government oversteps it's bounds by a long shot, especially since the GOP took over 4 years ago.

The Wastrel
9th November 04, 11:18 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_goods#Examples_of_Public_Goods

Omar
10th November 04, 05:15 AM
lol.

When I saw Wastrels name up there I thought for sure he was going to be arguing the other side.

Oh and:

I'd say 22.5K is a very large sum. Is there some mythical energy that makes money less valuable when you have more of it?

Not mythical. It's the same old supply and demand. When you have more of ANYTHING, each individual one decreases in value. I learned that back in elementary school. Bill Gates could give out 22.5K on a whim. He could place that much on a game of liar's dice. 22.5K has VASTLY less value to Bill Gates than to me.

Are you really that stupid or just playing dumb?

afronaut
10th November 04, 09:42 AM
Sure they have, but a free-market could've produced these things as well.

The free market moves by profit and reward. People sell drugs because they can make money, same as selling cars, houses, Internet Service, etc.

Who would buy public schools? Administratively and financially it wouldn't work. We couldn't collect enough money all at once, we couldn't spend it properly, and any system constructed to do so would quickly look like the curreny federal / local amalgam that we have now, which would wind up having to be tax funded.


It can also mean the difference between spending income on crack-cocaine instead of rent. A flat-tax rate still means that the wealthy are paying more taxes.

Is that supposed to be funny?

Beatdown Richie
10th November 04, 09:47 AM
I'd say 22.5K is a very large sum. Is there some mythical energy that makes money less valuable when you have more of it?

That is indeed a very common, and realistic, assumption in economics. It's referred to as a concave utility function or, in a more general context, the law of diminishing returns.

Seriously, if you don't understand it, imagine the following situations:

- you're broke, hungry, and if you don't pay your rent soon, you'll be homeless. Someone gives you a check for 1000$. You go and pay your rent, have a decent meal, and go to bed a happy man.

- you're Bill Gates, sitting on your desk pondering what to do with your billions. Some other rich-ass friend of yours gives you a check for 1000$. You shrug and think, gee, thanks.

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 11:47 AM
Bill Gates could give out 22.5K on a whim. He could place that much on a game of liar's dice. 22.5K has VASTLY less value to Bill Gates than to me.

Are you really that stupid or just playing dumb?

One dollar is worth the same to me as it does to Bill Gates, it has the same buying power. Are you really that stupid or just playing dumb?


you're broke, hungry, and if you don't pay your rent soon, you'll be homeless. Someone gives you a check for 1000$. You go and pay your rent, have a decent meal, and go to bed a happy man.

More likely, they buy a few hits of drugs and some alcohol and go to bed happy. Then they bitch about not making enough money the next day as they are being evicted.


- you're Bill Gates, sitting on your desk pondering what to do with your billions. Some other rich-ass friend of yours gives you a check for 1000$. You shrug and think, gee, thanks.

After the thanks, you go invest the money into something lucritive in which it can grow.


Who would buy public schools? Administratively and financially it wouldn't work.

Oh, I think it might. I think a corporation run school would serve the corporation well, they'd be growing new talent to work for their companies. Many corporations have training programs.

Beatdown Richie
10th November 04, 12:03 PM
Right back at ya:


Are you really that stupid or just playing dumb?

You seem to be so stuck in your cliche that all poor people just waste their money, and if they knew how to restrict themselves, they'd be just fine. Case in point:


More likely, they buy a few hits of drugs and some alcohol and go to bed happy. Then they bitch about not making enough money the next day as they are being evicted.

...so you can't imagine a situation where someone, through circumstances beyond his control, has a lack of money. Too bad the world doesn't work that way. At any rate, your little diatribe is completely beside the point here.



After the thanks, you go invest the money into something lucritive in which it can grow.

and then what? You have even more money that you couldn't blow in a lifetime if you spent all day and all night trying your hardest to waste it. Look, Bill Gates probably wouldn't even NOTICE if a fucking million went AWOL from one of his accounts, and you're telling me a thousand dollars is worth as much to him as to some poor soul who has to struggle to pay his rent?

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 12:07 PM
..so you can't imagine a situation where someone, through circumstances beyond his control, has a lack of money.

I have yet to see any able-bodied poor person that wasn't a victim of his own poor decisions. I can agree with welfare for disabled people.

I also think Bill Gates would notice a missing million dollars. His financial empire grew because of his attention to detail and smart money strategies. A thousand dollars has the same buying power for Bill Gates as it does for a poor person.

afronaut
10th November 04, 12:26 PM
I have yet to see any able-bodied poor person that wasn't a victim of his own poor decisions. I can agree with welfare for disabled people.

Are you a:

1) Social worker
2) Cop
3) Criminal lawyer
4) Judge
5) Gov't employee in social services
6) Mission priest
7) Volunteer for the poor or homeless ?

How do you know? How many poor people have you met? How are a crummy education and unsafe neighborhood with no good jobs poor decisions?

"You were born in Compton? That was stupid."

Beatdown Richie
10th November 04, 12:29 PM
Define buying power. Yes, Bill Gates can buy the same things. Then again, if he had wanted these things, he would have bought them with 1000 bucks out of his billions any time before, and therefore doesn't need them anymore.

For a poor person, a gain of 1000$ mean he can fulfill a long list of urgent needs that he couldn't before, hence, a dramatic increase in happiness. Whether the person chooses wisely in how to spend that money is a completely separate issue.

For a very rich person, the same monetary gain is very unlikely to make any significant difference in what the person can or cannot afford, hence, little increase in happiness.

If you cannot understand that, it's probably because you refuse to understand it. It's really quite simple and obvious.

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 12:33 PM
How do you know? How many poor people have you met? How are a crummy education and unsafe neighborhood with no good jobs poor decisions?


I was born poor into a poor family. I had poor friends and all of my neighbors were poor. Most of the families made the same, if not more than my family. Yet, they had crappy lives. My parents were strict with money and, for some reason, we had nice things. I attended crummy schools and lived in an unsafe neighborhood. I made good decisions to rise above poverty.

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 12:36 PM
If you cannot understand that, it's probably because you refuse to understand it. It's really quite simple and obvious.

Oh, I understand what you're saying. I just think it's a rather silly point. One dollar buys the same amount of stuff, weather it came from Bill Gate's account or a beggar's can. I could care less about what the percieved, subjective value assigned by the person spending the dollar.

Beatdown Richie
10th November 04, 01:29 PM
a) It's not just "perceived, subjective" value. It's very real. There is an amount of money that makes a difference between "living in a shithole, being malnourished and poorly dressed" and "living in a home, eating properly and being well-dressed" for a poor person and the difference between "buying a Mercedes or a Porsche" to a rich person. These are very real, measurable effects, and if you think there's no qualitative difference between them you're deluded.

b) Even if it were just subjective and perceived, isn't that enough? You and Phrost are all worked up about taxation because you have the "subjective, perceived" impression that your money goes to people who don't deserve it, whatever that means in your subjective opinion.

Fundamentally, people act on their percepions. Therefore, "subjective, perceived" gain is what determines people's actions, not "real" gain measured by someone else. If that isn't important enough for you, I can't help you.

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 01:38 PM
If that isn't important enough for you, I can't help you.

It isn't, and I agree that you can't. Then again, I need no help.

The Wastrel
10th November 04, 03:55 PM
I was born poor into a poor family. I had poor friends and all of my neighbors were poor. Most of the families made the same, if not more than my family. Yet, they had crappy lives. My parents were strict with money and, for some reason, we had nice things. I attended crummy schools and lived in an unsafe neighborhood. I made good decisions to rise above poverty.

Did you attend a public school?

The Wastrel
10th November 04, 03:56 PM
I could care less about what the percieved, subjective value assigned by the person spending the dollar.


It takes a truly poor grasp of economics to say that about value, and I don't mean that as an insult. It's just that if you don't care to discuss taxation through reference to fundamental economic theories which have proven very valuable, I'm not sure where this will go.

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 04:02 PM
Yes, I was public-schooled and just because I don't agree with your views on economics doesn't mean that I have a poor understanding of them.

The Wastrel
10th November 04, 04:04 PM
Yes, I was public-schooled and just because I don't agree with your views on economics doesn't mean that I have a poor understanding of them.


It's not a matter of disagreeing. It's a matter of basic economic theory. You're violating assumptions that are implicit to free-market economic theory. Does that mean you're wrong? Not necessarily; it just means you're not making an argument based on economics, and can't really claim to.

And I hope you see that the fact that a public school allowed you to achieve a very respectable education evokes some serious questions about your positions on the provision of public goods, taxation, etc.

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 04:23 PM
Public school played a very small part in my success, my own motivation played the bigger part, along with good parenting by my folks. I was bored at school, it wasn't a challenge at all. Most of my training was provided by the military.

The Wastrel
10th November 04, 04:25 PM
Public school played a very small part in my success, my own motivation played the bigger part, along with good parenting by my folks. I was bored at school, it wasn't a challenge at all. Most of my training was provided by the military.

Are you saying your parents could have afforded to send you to private school?

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 04:26 PM
No, they could not have. But what I am saying is that my public school was crummy, yet I still succeed.

DJeter1234
10th November 04, 05:36 PM
so what you're saying is that you think if there had been corperate shcools instead of public schools you could have somehow gotten into one that waas at least as good and been at least as sucesfull?

Thaiboxerken
10th November 04, 05:39 PM
I didn't even come close to saying anything of the sort, DJ.

DJeter1234
10th November 04, 05:44 PM
no, but if you don't think so, then how would you have gone to any school if public schools hadn't existed? The above is the only answer of which I could think.

Freddy
10th November 04, 06:03 PM
Public schools in general are crummy. Even though they may give you a high School diploma its not enough to succeed in this world without some sort of secondary education.

afronaut
10th November 04, 06:16 PM
Public school played a very small part in my success, my own motivation played the bigger part, along with good parenting by my folks. I was bored at school, it wasn't a challenge at all. Most of my training was provided by the military.

The military is one of the largest recipients of tax money. Your training was provided by a government program. Wasn't that money well spent on you? You are now a tax paying member of society, contributing, etc.

willy
11th November 04, 12:46 AM
sorry for the long post but it's been a while since i've had time to post-


An honest question, really: Do you think that the government shouldn't be allowed to collect any taxes?

i think the governemnt should not be allowed to collect taxes unfairly


"You don't feel you should have to pay for helping the poor? OK. But we have to pay for things we don't like all the time. Missile defense, subsidies for car companies and agribusiness, etc. You are welcome to disagree with these expenditures and lobby to have Congress change them, but it doesn't make something automatically bad just because you don't like it. That's what happens in a plularistic democracy. You are always going to be paying for someone else's shit."

and we still would be paying for someone else's shit, just at a fair rate.

"Third, if you abandon the notion of pooling resoruces for the collective good, then do you also abandon the military, the public education system, federal scientific research and all the other things that we do with tax money? It sounds simplicitic, but think of it this way: If you start "taking you ball and going home", where does it stop?"

it stops with the powers listed in the consitution, national defence, interstate commerece and settling disputes between states etc, it says nothing of feeding and clothing the poor. let our state and local governments handle this shit. then we will have more local control over things like the poverty line( poverty in nebraska is not the same amount of money as poverty in L.A.) state and local governments will also have alot more sucess in placing people in jobs and catching fraud then a large federal government.

"Well, sure. Homeless? Stay in your summer home! Broke, can't feed your kids, why don't you dip into that boat fund or stock split you've been saving for after Ted and Anne graduate from Vassar"

that's right say that all the rich hate the poor and then show your disdain for those with money. but then again that's what this is for alot of people isn't it, those with lower incomes feel that somehow the rich only got that way by luck and sneaky backroom deals, not hard work, intelligence and willingness to take risks, therefore they owe the poor something right?

"An honest question, really: Do you think that the government shouldn't be allowed to collect any taxes?"

the gov. can collect all the taxes it wants, as long as it collects them fairly across the board.

"No. A free market will never produce roads, for example. Public goods are underprovided. This is not radicalism. It is basic economics, and a consequence of the enlightened self-interest assumptions that go back as far as Adam Smith"

i belive a free market actually would produce roads. i couldn't make money if i can't deliver my goods to market. therefore i need a road from my place to the place i sell goods. so i get together with some of my fellow bussiness men and we all realizing the usefullness of quick traffic to and from our bussinesses build a network of roads. of course a good network of roads falls under intersate commerece and national defence so i am more than happy to have my federal government tax money go towards those pursuits.

"Not mythical. It's the same old supply and demand. When you have more of ANYTHING, each individual one decreases in value. I learned that back in elementary school. Bill Gates could give out 22.5K on a whim. He could place that much on a game of liar's dice. 22.5K has VASTLY less value to Bill Gates than to me."

but X% of your wealth is the same amount to both the man making 20000 and the guy making 400000. and 35% of 400000 is much more than 5% of 20000

"I have yet to see any able-bodied poor person that wasn't a victim of his own poor decisions. I can agree with welfare for disabled people."

in my experiance i find this to be true also. please give me some example where this case would NOT be true.

"no, but if you don't think so, then how would you have gone to any school if public schools hadn't existed? The above is the only answer of which I could think."

it would prolly be like times before there were public schools. parents would either individualy or collectively hire tutors/teachers for their children. of course i would be perfectly fine with state or smaller units of local gov. raising taxes for schools. hell i'd even be okay with an admendment giving the feds to establish a federal school system although i'd much rather have it in local control WITHOUT interferance from the fed. goverment unlike the whole cluster fuck we have now of feds pushing guideline but not funding and states having to teach to tests..ugh educational system is a whole other mess for some other topic


"The military is one of the largest recipients of tax money. Your training was provided by a government program. Wasn't that money well spent on you? You are now a tax paying member of society, contributing, etc"

the military also demands service, therefore we are not giving charity to the military people but training them and paying them for a certain task, namely defending our country. i am more than willing to pay for services rendered.

afronaut
11th November 04, 10:16 AM
So many problems. Must ... pick ... one.


i think the governemnt should not be allowed to collect taxes unfairly

I think we can all agree with that. What we are arguing about is what constitutes fair.


it stops with the powers listed in the consitution, national defence, interstate commerece and settling disputes between states etc, it says nothing of feeding and clothing the poor. let our state and local governments handle this shit. then we will have more local control over things like the poverty line( poverty in nebraska is not the same amount of money as poverty in L.A.) state and local governments will also have alot more sucess in placing people in jobs and catching fraud then a large federal government.


If the states have to take care of social programs, won't the same amount of taxes be collected in the same way, just going to states, cities and counties? Also, poverty is different from state to state and city to city, but usually states get to set their own levels for social programs. Nebraska takes in less money and gives out less money because it can. Food and clothes just don't cost as much there.

I said: "Well, sure. Homeless? Stay in your summer home! Broke, can't feed your kids, why don't you dip into that boat fund or stock split you've been saving for after Ted and Anne graduate from Vassar" Your response was:



that's right say that all the rich hate the poor and then show your disdain for those with money. but then again that's what this is for alot of people isn't it, those with lower incomes feel that somehow the rich only got that way by luck and sneaky backroom deals, not hard work, intelligence and willingness to take risks, therefore they owe the poor something right?

It's not about getting rich or taking someone down a peg. It's about making sure that people have enough to eat, can heat their homes (or have them at all), or have the same chances to make something of themselves that other people do. I was being a bitch because you had said before that savings and helath insurance weren't all that hard to invest in, but investing costs a least a couple hundred dollars a month and health insurance without employer assitance can be $1000 or more a month. That's not easy. It's impossible.


i belive a free market actually would produce roads. i couldn't make money if i can't deliver my goods to market. therefore i need a road from my place to the place i sell goods. so i get together with some of my fellow bussiness men and we all realizing the usefullness of quick traffic to and from our bussinesses build a network of roads. of course a good network of roads falls under intersate commerece and national defence so i am more than happy to have my federal government tax money go towards those pursuits.

Private highways would cause more problems and money then they solve and save. Think about it: you can't rent movie at Blockbuster with another chain's membership card. What if you are driving from Chicago to Baltimore and you try to get off the turnpike and head south and you get to a different company's road. What if you don't have enough for a membership? Or they won't let a competitor's user drive on their roads? Multiply this by a thousand. Private roads. Ever try seeing a doctor in a state you don't live in? Same thing.


but X% of your wealth is the same amount to both the man making 20000 and the guy making 400000. and 35% of 400000 is much more than 5% of 20000


It's not about the dollar amount, it's about what that buys for the person who has it.

Thaiken said: "I have yet to see any able-bodied poor person that wasn't a victim of his own poor decisions. I can agree with welfare for disabled people."


in my experiance i find this to be true also. please give me some example where this case would NOT be true.

That's not the way it works. I can't just say "Black people smell funny. Please cite examples on non-funny-smelling black people to rebut me." You make a claim, you prove it.

And even if it were true, which it isn't, and if it weren't cruel and bigoted, which it is: What's wrong with helping someone? It's an investment. Help someone become self-sufficient and they will contribute and help others. Good social programs can pay for themselves by creating good citizens.


of course i would be perfectly fine with state or smaller units of local gov. raising taxes for schools. hell i'd even be okay with an admendment giving the feds to establish a federal school system although i'd much rather have it in local control WITHOUT interferance from the fed. goverment unlike the whole cluster fuck we have now of feds pushing guideline but not funding and states having to teach to tests..ugh educational system is a whole other mess for some other topic


If you are leery about the collection and use of your tax dollars, then a totally federal school system is the last thing you'd want.


the military also demands service, therefore we are not giving charity to the military people but training them and paying them for a certain task, namely defending our country. i am more than willing to pay for services rendered

Social programs aren't charity. This isn't a Dickens novel. They are an investment in the economy, law enforcement, health and a number of other things. We do get a return on those investments. It's just complicated to figure what they are.