8/1/10

Taxes. They tell us that next to death, they are the only thing we cannot escape in life. This is certainly true in today's Keynesian America. They say that "you pay the cost to be the boss", today...this quote had jumped outside of it's own parameters. That is because in today's wacky welfare world, so much as thinking about being "the boss" or let alone trying to scale those steps of ambition will leave the hardest working and highest earning among us scratching our heads. Never before in American history has the concept of "opportunity cost" made so many winners wonder, whether the game is worth playing under this set of rules.

After the bailout, Goldman, BP and every other parlor trick desgined to make idiots swoon for the strong hand of Big Government...we have our next spotlight subject.
The Bush Tax Cuts. The refuge of fat cat bankers, evil capitalists and everyone not looking for the federal government to play the role of sugar daddy in their lives.

Should they stay or should they go.

Instead of getting into a detailed analysis I will simply give you guys two links, from the same site on the same subject. Here , and here . Two sides of one "argument", one logical, analytical and impartial. One self-serving, ideological, populist and ignorant of the ABC's of reality.

See if you can tell which is which. *Insert emoticon of little guy rolling eyes here*

I am curious how you guys feel about this course of events in regards to your own future. Many of you will soon be in the vaunted "only 2 to 3 %" our buddy Geithner keeps referencing.

Are you guys and gals cool with the disappearing the Bush era tax cuts? Is breaking your back and slaving away through your 20's so that your 30'-60's can be known as "my 2 quarters on the Dollar years" something you're looking forward to? Is all that retarded rambling about "equality and fairness" you were force fed all throughout grade school still sounding good to you?

I hope it is. I hope you are enjoying it. This issue is not political. It is arguably not even fiscal, with economics only touching upon and not getting to the heart of the subject.

The issue is that we as a society have completely and utterly endorsed sloth and incompetence. It is only a matter of time until this river starts flowing in another direction.

SAYONARA.

Comments (13)

8/1/10

The current discussion about taxation is one the strangest stances on fiscal policy. Invariably, people like the OP turn a pretty straight forward fiscal argument into some stupid argument about welfare, equity and fairness. The only two things that are relevant in taxation are deficit growth and GDP growth. While I do agree people from both sides of the political spectrum tend to turn this argument away from this, the right wing has taken it overboard. Equating a shift back to the tax rate under Clinton ( a time period where Americans saw voracious growth, low unemployment and a balanced budget) as some inexorable shift towards socialism and Marxism is dishonest.

Am I fine with the death of the Bush tax cuts? Yes. Ceteris Paribus, the bush tax cuts would add 2 TRILLION dollars to the deficit over the next decade.
http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=966

While the right wing will argue that the expanding budget deficit threatens America's superpower status, they stand in the way of easiest way to cut the deficit. If I were to extrapolate the CBO's findings to yearly government expenditures, 48 percent of the yearly budget deficit would evaporate with the expiration of the tax cuts.

The most obvious, rational, counterargument is that increased marginal tax rates would decrease consumption and thus the GDP. I actually agree that this is likely to happen initially. But the tax cuts, were irrationally unstimulative. According to the CBO, .the Bush tax cuts had a money multiplier of .3-.4 while unemployment benefits have a money multiplier of 1.6.
http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=2453

I am not cocky, I am confident, and when you tell me I am the best it is a compliment.
-Styles P

8/1/10

The whole concept of a federal income tax was based on a lie--the 16th Amendment was approved with the advocates promising that the tax rate would be about 1% and only on those making extraordinary incomes (it was something like $1 million per year 100 years ago). Within a half decade that tax rate had risen to well above 50%. In essence, there would be no federal income tax if not for the out and out lies of the income tax's advocates. The same thing occurred with Social Security (promising that the tax rates would be extraordinarily low and that the benefits would act as a last ditch safety net for the supremely elderly) and the alternative minimum tax (meant to hit the wealthiest Americans in 1969 who were making about $100,000 or so at the time).

The fact is, our entire fiscal situation, from the $107 trillion unfunded Medicare and Social Security liability to our budget-sized annual deficit all the way to the 1 million + words of the federal income tax code are a result of the American Left and their century of transparent lies and manipulation (after all, that's what a huge tax code is meant to do--manipulate human behavior and pick winners and losers).

The Bush tax cuts, in my view, are not going to be the X-factor in saving our nation's budget--it's just another example of how liberals believe they are entitled to the fruits of other's labor. What we need is fundamental tax reform--there should be a flat tax or a consumption tax and the tax code should be short and transparent, not manipulative and opaque.

8/1/10

I agree that Social Security isn't providing the last-ditch safety net it was designed to, but last time I checked, it wasn't the left that did away with private pensions that used to provide the majority of retirement benefits. You can argue all you want about indivualized retirement accounts, but they don't have the benefit of the variety of asset classes and professional expertise that an asset manager provides (last time I checked, there weren't geniuses at Edward Jones).

This isn't as simple as liberal/conservative. I doubt you'd find too many people collecting benefits complaining that they're lasting them 20+ years with no regard for our country's fiscal health, regardless of their political affiliation. And neither party wants to piss off AARP.

I completely support the political science majors shutting the hell up about how evil Goldman is, but Midas (and similar business folks) aren't exactly doing themselves any favors or sounding much smarter by treading in their waters.

Life, liberty and the pursuit of Starwood Points

8/1/10

Virginia Tech, your synopsis on the 16 amendment is poor at best. Prior to it's ratification, the federal government collected taxes with the Revenue Act of 1961, which allowed the federal government to tax all income above $800 at 3 percent. After some judicial challenges, Taft proposed a 2% excise tax on corporations' 42 states ended up ratifying the amendment and it became law in 1913. From the onset, the federal income tax was double digits, with a 12 percent rate in 1918.
http://www.taxfoundation.org/research/show/2140.html

If you want to know why the income tax rate increased, look in the mirror. It is the American people who elect people who have no problem expanding the government. This left/right dichotomy is simply a stupid man's argument. Reagan, the right's archetype for a strong conservative, tripled the deficit.; pushing the deficit from 900 billion dollars 2.8 Trillion dollars. In regards to what Virginia Tech said, I would be askance if you could find a single republican/right wing politician who was against Social Security, Medicare or any other middle class program.

I am not cocky, I am confident, and when you tell me I am the best it is a compliment.
-Styles P

8/1/10

eok, the fact is, the federal income tax wasn't going to survive in the long run without a constitutional amendment, thus the 16th Amendment. And I can find you a politician who doesn't support Social Security--Sharron Angle, Republican of Nevada. The point is, conservatives--not Republicans--support complete reform of the system, basically in order to keep from bankrupting our nation.
http://www.ustreas.gov/education/fact-sheets/taxes...

"The income tax was abolished in 1872. From 1868 to 1913, almost 90 percent of all revenue was collected from the remaining excises."

"By 1913, 36 States had ratified the 16th Amendment to the Constitution. In October, Congress passed a new income tax law with rates beginning at 1 percent and rising to 7 percent for taxpayers with income in excess of $500,000. Less than 1 percent of the population paid income tax at the time."

8/1/10

The simple fact is that the federal government does not need more money. Government at all levels (federal, state, municipal) is WAY TOO BIG.

I do not support letting the Bush tax cuts expire because the federal government DOES NOT NEED IT. The federal government needs to cut spending and make their operations more efficient. It is not government's job to create jobs by making government larger.

8/1/10

Listen, I don't want to hear shit about tax cuts adding to the federal deficit. You know what, fire government workers, streamline government services and cut expenditures.

I want the world to hear this. American's were not born to fund the government. This shit is not the matrix. Reduce the government, real simple.

I will happily support an increase in taxes if that increase is shouldered by the 50% of the country who currently pay ZERO FEDERAL TAXES. Taxing people who work hard and produce in this country to support people who do not is ass backwards.

The USA has overspent. We pissed away too much money in the good times and now we have too much debt. The solution is simply to spend less. Why should increased taxes always be the solution? It makes no sense to me since the people who we keep increasing the taxes on are never reaping the benefits that the tax funds go to.

I am sorry. I guess I don't understand what America is all about. We rebel against the Kind of England because we want to be free and not raped by the tax man, but fast forward 200+ years and we are all about tax this and tax that. Could someone please tell me at what point have we been taxed enough? I was a definitive point. Tell me right here and now how much is the maximum limit we can be taxed. Every year you hear the same thing "just a little more". I want to know how much more is enough. How about I give 100% of what I earn to the government, will that be enough?

I hope everyone on here is watching the news and listening to this shit. I work hard and hand over to the government more and more and more of my money. They piss it away. Anyone that thinks we should pay more taxes ought to be tar and feathered. This is the biggest crock of shit I have ever heard. Taxes should be going down, not up.

Let this ring loud and clear. Government cannot solve your problems and make things fair. You had a mommy, you do not need another one. We work hard for our money and have a fucking RIGHT to spend it as we see fit.

8/1/10

Honestly, the only people who are all about taxing more and the losers who pay no tax themselves.
http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/pol...
http://www.taxfoundation.org/research/show/206.html

Cut the child tax credit, cut the interest deductibility of mortgages, raise SS retirement age, cut federal work forces, reduce and cap wages for Congressmen, reduce welfare payments, increase taxes on those who pay none.

8/1/10
In reply to TNA
8/1/10
Anthony .:

Honestly, the only people who are all about taxing more and the losers who pay no tax themselves.
http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/pol...
http://www.taxfoundation.org/research/show/206.html

Cut the child tax credit, cut the interest deductibility of mortgages, raise SS retirement age, cut federal work forces, reduce and cap wages for Congressmen, reduce welfare payments, increase taxes on those who pay none.

Indeed, the Federal income tax is progressive. However, the totality of state, local and other federal taxes are largely regressive. When the system as a whole is considered, the results are much less inflammatory-- a slightly progressive structure:
http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2009/04/13/bus...

http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/04/13/just-...

8/1/10

Thanks for posting those links. I am away right now, but will look into it further. I might be wrong and if I am I will admit it. Either way we should look for ways to either stretch a buck or reduce expenses. Continually raising taxes or finding new things to tax is not the solution for everything.

I will note that lower income individuals pay more "sin" taxes and also have a higher cost of living through a variety of reasons. My huge qualm is that the solution is to always increase taxes in one form or another. At what point do we say we have taxes the average citizen enough and it is time to find a more efficient way to do things or reduce what we can do. I do not think the government can spend money in a better way than I can. Fundamentally, the individual who earned the money has a right to spend it as they see fit.

By all means, please everyone post more links. I find this argument to be fascinating and I am obviously passionate about the subject. If I am wrong let me know about it.

In reply to TNA
8/3/10
Anthony .:

Thanks for posting those links. I am away right now, but will look into it further. I might be wrong and if I am I will admit it. Either way we should look for ways to either stretch a buck or reduce expenses. Continually raising taxes or finding new things to tax is not the solution for everything.

I will note that lower income individuals pay more "sin" taxes and also have a higher cost of living through a variety of reasons. My huge qualm is that the solution is to always increase taxes in one form or another. At what point do we say we have taxes the average citizen enough and it is time to find a more efficient way to do things or reduce what we can do. I do not think the government can spend money in a better way than I can. Fundamentally, the individual who earned the money has a right to spend it as they see fit.

By all means, please everyone post more links. I find this argument to be fascinating and I am obviously passionate about the subject. If I am wrong let me know about it.

It's a really interesting issue to me because both sides can make convincing, intellectually honest arguments. Of course there is demagoguery too, this is American politics after all. I tend to support letting the cuts expire, not because it is the best course of action, but because it is the only deficit-decreasing measure that has any political chance of passing. The uninformed voters are mostly to blame here:

According to a CBS News/New York Times poll in July 2009, 56% of people were opposed to paying more taxes to reduce the deficit and 53% were also opposed to cutting spending. According to a Pew Research poll in June 2009, there was no single category of spending that a majority of Americans favored cutting. Only cuts in foreign aid (less than 1% of the budget), polled higher than 33%.

The message from the voters seems to be "Pay down the deficit, but don't raise my taxes or cut spending."

1/13/12

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