Open Thread

Anna Nova asked for an open thread, and I promised to deliver on one.
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Update: I have moved the Open Thread to the front page by redating it.

181 Comments

  1. “Not collecting money is not the same as spending money.”

    Both increase the deficit, which is what really matters.

    When you folks speak of cutting the deficit and debt, you talk spending cuts, not tax increases too. Your side has a fundamental misunderstanding of how to run a viable government regarding fiscal policy, otherwise your leaders would not ever sign a no tax increase pledge. There are times, like now, where both tax increases and spending cuts are needed.

  2. SINP writes

    To hell with your mother country, is what you just said. You keep stepping into it, which reveals the greed and arrogant attitudes of people like you.

    Looks like the aggressive side has taken over SINP now.

    SINP has the same attitude which he blasts above. He doesn’t pay any more taxes than absolutely necessary, despite his incessant complaints to the contrary, which reveals the greed and arrogant attitudes of people like him.

  3. SINP writes

    When you folks speak of cutting the deficit and debt, you talk spending cuts, not tax increases too. Your side has a fundamental misunderstanding of how to run a viable government regarding fiscal policy, otherwise your leaders would not ever sign a no tax increase pledge. There are times, like now, where both tax increases and spending cuts are needed.

    100% incorrect. There is NO revenue problem. There is a SPENDING problem. Period.

  4. I like your plan, Hitch. My only recommendation would be to limit the total contribution of high income earners to triple the average contribution of earners under $250,000 adjusted for inflation.

  5. “Both increase the deficit, which is what really matters”

    No, both do not increase the deficit. ONLY spending increases the deficit. If income (tax revenue) is higher, we can spend more. If income (tax revenue is lowere) we must spend less. Spending more then you take in whether revenue is up or down increases the defict. And I’ll go ya one better. Spending up to equalibrium during the “good” time ends up a deficit the moment revenue falls.

    “When you folks speak of cutting the deficit and debt, you talk spending cuts, not tax increases too. Your side has a fundamental misunderstanding of how to run a viable government regarding fiscal policy,…”

    The fundamental misunderstanding Wagonwheel, comes when you folks fail to realize that taxing something makes less of it. Your second misunderstanding is that you folks believe the job of government is to take money from some people and reallocate it to others. It’s not. It’s job is to run the country, reallocation is bad fiscal policy.

  6. BTW, I bet SINP drives around to get a better price at the gas pump — another hypocritical maneuver. Why not get gas at the highest price so that you’ll help the federal government more, SINP?

  7. Wagonwheel says:
    April 10, 2012 at 14:52

    “Ahh, the morality of the left: It’s okay to steal the fruit of another’s labor by force as long as that other makes more than you! I believe envy to be the devil’s favorite sin, it creates so much strife among men.”

    Let’s be honest and factual here: Without government, we would have total chaos. Without taxes, we would have no government.

    I know that you know that, Hoagie, so stop your silly projections. Time to grow up on this issue! “

    Do you wish to grow up? Then grow up by facing up to the realization that we would still be able to have a government with fewer taxes; that saying a smaller government equals chaos is hysterical; that keeping the hirelings in check so that they do not attempt to become our masters is no fault; that expressing contempt for a bureaucrat place-holder is not the same as expressing contempt for any particular much less every office; and finally that political employees fill their government issue rice-bowls at our sufferance, while our property is not held at theirs’.

    Again, you seem to imagine that the rain will not fall unless some woman is kneeling in the Oval Office Lewinskiing some bloated leftist desk jockey.

    Grow up Perry. Shrugging at your demands is not contempt for the country. Just at cost you place on your particular association.

  8. “It’s job is to run the country, reallocation is bad fiscal policy.”

    If citizens are in need of the basics through no fault of their own, then reallocation is a moral requirement, Hoagie!

    Acts 20:35 ESV

    In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

  9. “… that saying a smaller government equals chaos is hysterical ….”

    I did not say that, DNW.

    I would argue that the big government we have is a response to the greed which has overtaken the powerful in our body politic, leaving tens of millions of Americans in a position which, without help from government, would be unable to have the basics for life.

  10. Eric, I think you might be misunderstanding Buffet’s point, which is that he objects to the unfairness of a system in which his secretary is taxed at a higher rate than he is taxes. He is calling for a revision in the tax code which takes care of this situation.

    If that is so, then Buffet is still engaging in moral vanity, just of a different kind. If he really cared about “Fairness” for his secretary, then he would pay her more and then shut up about how “Unfair” the tax code is.

    But what he wants is to get public approval for demanding that the government force ALL rich people to pay more taxes, regardless of how those people feel about it. As we keep saying, if he feels his taxes are too low, then he is perfectly free to pay more. But obviously he would much rather take the self-serving route instead. He gets to act all holier-than-thou and in the process kiss up to Democrats and the president, playing the role of the Teacher’s Pet, so to speak.

  11. If citizens are in need of the basics through no fault of their own, then reallocation is a moral requirement, Hoagie!

    Oh? Says who? I thought you were opposed to the sort of moral absolutist statements such as the one you just made above.

  12. Eric Pfeiffer at Yahoo News reported the following about 40 minutes ago.

    George Zimmerman’s attorneys quit as counsel

    Zimmerman’s attorneys announced they have stepped down and are no longer representing him

    Say they have “lost contact” with Zimmerman and are withdrawing as counsel

    Attorneys say they still believe former client is innocent and acted in self-defense

    “It’s no so much that we are resigning. It’s that we cannot continue to represent him until he comes forward,” said attorney Craig Sonner. “He’s got to reach out to us,” added co-counsel Hal Uhrig

    “He’s not returning my message not returning my texts not returning my emails. He wont’ even give me a collect call,” Sonner said.

    Despite stepping away from Zimmerman as a client, both attorneys say they continue to believe he acted in self-defense. “We frankly believe the correct decision will be to not charge him,” Uhrig said.

    The attorneys say they know of Zimmerman’s location and have his personal phone number but have been unable to reach him directly for 48 hours.

  13. The question now is rather disturbing. Is Zimmerman layin’ low, is he on the run, or is some bounty hunter collecting the blood money the Black Panther’s offered for Zimmerman Dead or Alive?

  14. I know you would do just that, Hoagie! You already have. To hell with your mother country, is what you just said. You keep stepping into it, which reveals the greed and arrogant attitudes of people like you.

    This is the sort of moral preening/moral judgmentalism that many of us conservatives find offensive coming from left wingers. Who, exactly, are YOU to pass moral judgment on Hoagie or anyone else, or to attack their character and motives? You can’t preach moral relativism on the one hand when it is convenient to you and then engage in moral absolutism, again when it is convenient.

  15. Wagonwheel says:

    April 10, 2012 at 17:14

    “… that saying a smaller government equals chaos is hysterical ….”

    I did not say that, DNW.”

    I did not say that you did, Perry. Implying that I did assert that you did, simply for the sake of disputing such an imaginary assertion, is a lie.

    You said, and I fairly quoted you, that, “Without government, we would have total chaos. Without taxes, we would have no government.”

    My response was that you, having said that, should face “up to the realization that we would still be able to have a government with fewer taxes; that saying a smaller government equals chaos is hysterical; that keeping the hirelings in check so that they do not attempt to become our masters is no fault; that expressing contempt for a bureaucrat place-holder is not the same as expressing contempt for any particular much less every office; and finally that political employees fill their government issue rice-bowls at our sufferance, while our property is not held at theirs’.”

    “I would argue that the big government we have is a response to the greed which has overtaken the powerful in our body politic, …”

    It’s demonstrable that entitlements and transfer payments are responsible for much of the size of our government. In fact your little troll friend made second career out of challenging anyone to reduce the size of government by pointing just that pathetic fact out.

    If it’s greed that has bloated government, much of it is due to greed for services someone else is paying for.

    The other day you declared that the poor paid a disproportionate portion of their income in taxes compared to the wealthy.

    You never answered who it was that received a disproportionate portion of government delivered services in relation to the taxes they paid.

    Take Ezra Klein’s observation that the poor still pay taxes because

    “about three-quarters of all American households pay more in payroll taxes, which go toward Medicare and Social Security, than in income taxes.” And that doesn’t even mention state and local income taxes. “

    Social Security, and Medicare. So what the f**k are the poor’s taxes paying for? Rocket ships to the moon? Seems evident that as a class they pretty much “eat up” everything they themselves produce, and much of what others do as well. Yet your gripe is that they are “cheated” because they don’t get more of what others produce.

    The poor often live in housing paid for by others, and eat food paid for by others, and the taxes they do pay clearly offset only a portion of the cost of what they presently do or will receive in municipal and social services.

    So who has cheated them?

  16. “You never answered who it was that received a disproportionate portion of government delivered services in relation to the taxes they paid. ”

    … should not have been block quoted.

  17. WW requested:

    Mr Editor, I would suggest that you carry over the last 10 or so comments over to the new Open Thread.

    I’m not certain that I can just move a comment, but I will provide a link to a recent comment in this open thread to make it easy enough for readers to get to the comment thread.

  18. Ahhh, I changed my mind. Rather than starting a new open thread, sionce this one is still so active, I’ll just reset the date to put it on he front page.

  19. George Zimmerman’s attorneys quit as counsel

    There’s more than that, ropelight. Zimmerman contacted the prosecutor, which his former attorneys said they would have advised him not to do. Moreover, he contacted, guess who, Shawn Hannity, also a big mistake, according to these attorneys, because there is no attorney-client privilege, therefore, Hannity could be called as a witness by the prosecution. Finally, he has left the state of FL. If he does get charged, which he should, it might now be impossible to bring him to justice.

    This man has worse than shaken baby syndrome; he’s nuts, thinking that he knows better than his own attorneys.

  20. “You said, and I fairly quoted you, that, “Without government, we would have total chaos. Without taxes, we would have no government.”

    My response was that you, having said that, should face “up to the realization that we would still be able to have a government with fewer taxes; that saying a smaller government equals chaos is hysterical; that keeping the hirelings in check so that they do not attempt to become our masters is no fault; that expressing contempt for a bureaucrat place-holder is not the same as expressing contempt for any particular much less every office; and finally that political employees fill their government issue rice-bowls at our sufferance, while our property is not held at theirs’.””

    Oh please, DNW, you use hyperbole all the time, while you constantly create your straw men, then attack them. That’s your style.

    Moreover, I’ve made the same point as Ezra Klein on here many times, that one must consider the total tax burden they face, not just federal taxes. Yet you wingnuts keep trying to make your case just on the federal tax burden. Caught ya agin!!!

  21. SINP writes

    There’s more than that, ropelight. Zimmerman contacted the prosecutor, which his former attorneys said they would have advised him not to do. Moreover, he contacted, guess who, Shawn Hannity, also a big mistake, according to these attorneys, because there is no attorney-client privilege, therefore, Hannity could be called as a witness by the prosecution. Finally, he has left the state of FL. If he does get charged, which he should, it might now be impossible to bring him to justice.

    This man has worse than shaken baby syndrome; he’s nuts, thinking that he knows better than his own attorneys.

    1) It’s Sean Hannity.
    2) He left Florida? Citation please. His attorneys merely said they don’t know where he is.
    3) He’s nuts? Is that your “professional” opinion, or is that you regurgitating stuff from your usual radical swill blogs?
    4) His attorneys acted rather ethically challenged: http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2012/04/10/zimmerman-lawyer-press-conference/?hpt=hp_c1

  22. “Yet you wingnuts keep trying to make your case just on the federal tax burden.”

    BUT, the Buffet Rule is about FEDERAL TAX, is it not? So you want to raise taxes on people already paying federal tax, while ignoring those who PAY NONE!!! Caught ya again!!!!!

  23. If Mr Zimmerman has fled, I can’t say that I blame him: he figures that he’s about to be railroaded.

    Who knows? Maybe he’s replayed the events in his mind, and thinks that he is guilty, or maybe he believes he’ll be railroaded even though he believes he is innocent. In either case, it’s time to head to Mexico!

    One thing needs to be considered: after all of this demagoguery, who here thinks that Mr Zimmerman could or would get a fair trial?

  24. “BUT, the Buffet Rule is about FEDERAL TAX, is it not? So you want to raise taxes on people already paying federal tax, while ignoring those who PAY NONE!!! Caught ya again!!!!!”

    No Hoagie, the issue is the total tax burden on the working person, especially on the middle and poor, since they are the victims of all the regressive taxes except for the federal tax.

    Moreover, I don’t buy this wingnut idea that our progressive federal tax system takes away from the job creators. The Bush years, in which tax cuts were made favoring these so-called job creators, who created only about 1 million net jobs in 8 years, compared to Obama’s having created about triple that number in 3.5 years. About all the Bush-wealthy accomplished was to create a huge real estate bubble from which we are still struggling to recover, not to mention two wars and massive increases in the DoD spending.

  25. “No Hoagie, the issue is the total tax burden on the working person, especially on the middle and poor, since they are the victims of all the regressive taxes except for the federal tax.”

    The Buffet Rule has nothing to do with the total tax burden, you ain’t listenin’ again Wagonwheel!!! It has to do with FEDERAL TAXES!!! You want to increase federal taxes on those people who already pay federal taxes, that’s the Buffet Rule!!! And as DNW so aptly pointed out the poor “eat up” any taxes they pay and then some by virtue of consuming MORE then they create!!! Caught again!!!!

  26. “Moreover, I don’t buy this wingnut idea that our progressive federal tax system takes away from the job creators.”

    You don’t? I’m not supprised since you are not a job creator. How many people do you employ? How many have you employed? But since you don’t “buy” into the idea please explain exactly who pays the taxes. The Poor? While you’re at it explain who hires employees. The poor?

    Frankly, I think liberals should be taxed at 75% to support their stupid ideas.

  27. BTW, neither Bush nor Obama EVER CREATED A F’n JOB!!!! Obama in particular never owned a business so how could he create a job? Show me his payroll costs!!! Show me!!! Adding to the federal payroll is not “creating jobs” unless we’ve become a communist country where everyone works for the government.

  28. “… especially on the middle and poor, since they are the victims of all the regressive taxes except for the federal tax.”

    So I guess that makes you and me “victims”. Happy? You have completed the liberal/progressive cycle, now we’re all victims!!! Then I assume millionaires like Obama are not victims like we are? Even though he has zero personal payroll since everyone who works for him is paid by us!!!

  29. ” The Bush years, in which tax cuts were made favoring these so-called job creators, who created only about 1 million net jobs in 8 years, compared to Obama’s having created about triple that number in 3.5 years.”

    Do you ever read what you type? “tax cuts” favoring “so-called” job creators? Then you pull a stupid statistic “1 millon” compared to “triple”? Are you out of your mind? Name one person Obama hired. One. Then we’ll talk abot the other 2,999,999. You moonbats latch on to a fantasy and just repeat it and repeat it thinking the rest of us will sooner or later buy it.

    Perhaps if he gets our credit rating lowered again an blows another 6 trillion in deficits HE can hire another 3 million!! Insanity!!!

  30. WW wrote:

    Moreover, I’ve made the same point as Ezra Klein on here many times, that one must consider the total tax burden they face, not just federal taxes. Yet you wingnuts keep trying to make your case just on the federal tax burden. Caught ya agin!!!

    No, it’s that we do not accept your arguments. You whine about the Social Security payroll tax, but everybody pays that, and the more you make, up to the income threshold, the more you pay. The man making $100,000 pays five times as much in Social Security taxes as the man making $20,000.

    But, of course, the man making $100,000 also pays income taxes, and at a higher marginal rate than the man making $50,000, while the man making $15,000 isn’t paying any federal income taxes at all. It isn’t that our tax system is “regressive,” but that it’s not as “progressive” as you believe it should be.

    As for me, I think everybody should pay the same. We are all American citizens, we all have one vote, and we should all be taxed equally.

  31. Don’t forget Mr. Editor, those “so-called” job creators like myself pay 100% of our own payroll taxes including Social Security not half.

  32. Oh please, DNW, you use hyperbole all the time, while you constantly create your straw men, then attack them. That’s your style.

    Moreover, I’ve made the same point as Ezra Klein on here many times, that one must consider the total tax burden they face, not just federal taxes. Yet you wingnuts keep trying to make your case just on the federal tax burden. Caught ya agin!!!

    If you want a tax that is truly “Fair”, then you should consider what we have here in Minnesota. Here, the sales tax is the same for everyone, but essentials like food and clothing are tax free. Thus, people with low incomes don’t have to pay tax on necessities, and this is especially helpful for poor people wuth families to support. OTOH, food at restaurants (and that includes fast food joints like McDonalds IS taxed, mainly because eating at restaurants is NOT considered a necessity.

  33. “One thing needs to be considered: after all of this demagoguery, who here thinks that Mr Zimmerman could or would get a fair trial?”

    Is this your saying that the US of A cannot conduct a fair trial? I think this is a reasonable concern, but I have more faith in our judicial system, in which our system of juror selection minimizes the possibility of treating Zimmerman unfairly. We simply cannot have Sean Hannity types picked as jurors.

    Ollie Garkey wrote a piece on this topic in DailyKos which I think deserves attention:

    “The fact that one white man is now experiencing some small level of judicial prejudice as the result of racial injustice should indeed be a cause for concern. It should wake us up so that we can have a conversation about white privilege and prejudice. We should be having a conversation about the kind of society that programs people like Zimmerman to assume that a black man in a hoodie is a “thug.” We should be talking about the consequences of injustice.

    We should be having a conversation about the fact that racism in America isn’t just harmful for Black Americans, or Native Americans, or any other individual group, racism against anyone harms everyone. Injustice anywhere threatens justice everywhere.”

    Thus, it is our continuing racism which we should be working on, then our justice system will automatically respond fairly and positively. Nevertheless, I have faith that Zimmerman can get a fair trial, provided that a competent judge conducts it, and the jury selection works fairly.

  34. That’s the same in Pennsylvania Eric. Necessities are not subject to sales tax. But you see, what Wagonwheel and his leftist mentor Ezra Klein are trying to do is muddy the water. Sales, property, excise and use tax are State Tax and not subject to the feds. We’re talking Federal Income Tax and all they want is to avoid the issue. That’s like saying turnpike tolls fall too heavily on the poor because they are a higher percent of their adjusted gross income. Perhaps turnpike tolls should reflect the make and year of the car, that way mean old guys like me could pay say $20 for his Lincoln while the poor down trodden victims (read poor) pay 10 cents?

    I just find it amusing that Wagonwheel and his folk want to give even more tax money to the people who consume the most in services and subsities yet want to inflate taxes on those who actually pay their own way-and then some. How “fair” is that?

  35. The Editor wrote: As for me, I think everybody should pay the same. We are all American citizens, we all have one vote, and we should all be taxed equally.

    I agree. The only fair and equitable way to finance the federal government is to total fiscal-year federal expenditures and divide that number by the total number of taxpayers. Each taxpayer would then be responsible for paying their own fair share. No exceptions.

  36. Or, there’s another way. Each dollar paid in federal taxes results in one vote. That is, you pay $357 dollars in federal taxes, you get 357 votes; pay $658 dollars and get 658 votes. One Dollar, One Vote.

  37. “We’re talking Federal Income Tax and all they want is to avoid the issue. “

    No, Hoagie, you are the one trying to avoid the issue of the total tax burden on the middle and poor. It’s there, Hoagie, so you simply cannot deny it. Who are you thinking of other than yourself? And by the way, the turnpike toll is not a tax in the same manner that sales taxes, social security taxes, and property taxes are, since the latter cannot be avoided.

    I agree with Eric, that not taxing necessities, like MN and PA do, is a reasonable policy, which I wish more states would practice. And then you have states like ours here, DE, which has no state sales tax at all – zero %! The result, people come in from neighboring states to do their shopping, especially on big items like appliances and cars ==> very good for business and residents alike!

  38. I don’t know ropelight, with all the overpaid liberal talking heads in the MSM, the millionaire Hollywood types from actors to producers, the billionaire crony capitalists like Buffet, Soros and Kos, we might find ourselves indentured servants of the left if it’s one dollar one vote.

  39. “I agree. The only fair and equitable way to finance the federal government is to total fiscal-year federal expenditures and divide that number by the total number of taxpayers. Each taxpayer would then be responsible for paying their own fair share. No exceptions.”

    This is impractical and unfair, since the burden is heavier on the lower income families, which is why we went to progressive taxation over a century ago, and it has never been changed.

  40. Hoagie, not a problem. If their personal greed exceeds their political convictions they will gripe alright, but they’ll pay the minimum. I’m counting on enlightened self-interest and good ol’ human nature to keep matters in perspective.

    OTOH, if rich moonbats seek political influence they will at least have to pay through then nose for it. Right now they get it for free and it often comes with a tax exemption attached for performing a so-called public service.

  41. “But, of course, the man making $100,000 also pays income taxes, and at a higher marginal rate than the man making $50,000, while the man making $15,000 isn’t paying any federal income taxes at all. It isn’t that our tax system is “regressive,” but that it’s not as “progressive” as you believe it should be.”

    No, Mr Editor, you are wrong again. Let’s take the SS tax: The $1M earner pays the same amount as the $100 earner, a lower percentage of his income. Thus, SS tax is regressive. In a similar manner, all flat taxes are regressive, because they impact lower income earners more than upper income earners. Therefore, based on your stated position, I would call you the whiner, Mr Editor!

  42. Perry, it’s not impractical or unfair. In fact, it’s entirely practical and imminently fair. What could possibly be more fair than we share the burden of government equally. We are all Americans and we should all pay an equal share of our federal government’s expenses. Equality is dependant on fairness.

    Nothing could be more fair. Equal taxation equals equal citizenship!

  43. You’re at it again Wagonwheel. “No, Hoagie, you are the one trying to avoid the issue of the total tax burden on the middle and poor. It’s there, Hoagie, so you simply cannot deny it. Who are you thinking of other than yourself?”

    The topic is the Buffet Rule not total tax burden. Try and keep up will ya? Also, What are you implying with “Who are you thinking of other than yourself?”? Are you implying my views on tax fairness are only for my own benefit and not that of others? Is this another attack on my honesty and integrity because I disagree with you? Or is this just a mere insinuation of selfishness?

    Now to borrow from Peter Ferarra:

    “What he( Obama) doesn’t understand is that under our tax system the earnings from capital investment are taxed not once, but multiple times. First, by the corporate ( or personal )income tax, then again by the individual income tax through the tax on dividends, then if you sell the capital investment, through the capital gains tax, then when you die, by the death tax. When he complains that the rich are not paying their fair share, he is just looking at the rate on any one of these taxes, and not considering all of the others. So he wants to raise them all to what he considers the tax rate paid by the middle class.

    As a result, he would double the top capital gains tax rate, double the dividend tax rate, increase the top two income tax rates by nearly 20 percent, and increase the death tax rate by 60 percent, while the corporate tax rate remains the highest in the industrialized world.

    His tax increases would apply to the top 3 percent of taxpayers, singles making over $200,000 a year, and couples making over $250,000. He says the increases are needed for the rich to pay their “fair share.” But as the Wall Street Journal noted on Feb. 14, those top 3 percent already pay more in federal income taxes than the bottom 97 percent combined!”

    But it’s never enough for the liberals till everyone is “equal”!!!!

  44. WW said:” The result, people come in from neighboring states to do their shopping, especially on big items like appliances and cars ==> very good for business and residents alike!”

    It dosen’t matter where you buy your car Wagonwheel, where youregister it is where the taxes are paid, that’s why they’re called “sales and USE taxes” . Once again you fail any knowledge of tax codes.

  45. Hoagie, my One Dollar = One Vote proposal also have the virtue of excluding welfare cheats and freeloaders of every sort. They don’t pay federal taxes so they won’t be able to vote pandering politicians into office to perpetuate their ride on the gravy train.

    PS: I also make all welfare, and food stamps, and every other form of direct government assistance a loan to be repaid in full before voting privileges would be restored.

    And, yes, voters would need to bring picture ID to the polls which proved the individual attempting to vote was the same individual registered.

  46. Perry writes

    “Oh please, DNW, you use hyperbole all the time, while you constantly create your straw men, then attack them. That’s your style.

    Moreover, I’ve made the same point as Ezra Klein on here many times, that one must consider the total tax burden they face, not just federal taxes. Yet you wingnuts keep trying to make your case just on the federal tax burden. Caught ya agin!!!”

    You really are morally insane. I know that you have been mouthing Klein’s talking points, which is why I referenced his defective analysis in particular.

    You assert that the “poor” pay a “disproportionate” part of their income in terms of their total tax burden relative to their income, and that payroll and state and local taxes should not be ignored.

    Sometimes this argument is phrased in terms of inequitable impact rather than straight percentages: the argument being made that one marginal disposable dollar is more precious to the poor than to the wealthy.

    The question you are writhing to evade however is who is it that receives direct goods and services in disproportion to their payment of taxes.

    Poor Joe pays X percentage of his earnings in taxes. It amounts to Y nominal dollars. Poor Joe receives 8 dollars back from the Government for each 1 of the Y nominal dollars he pays in taxes – local, state, and federal – in socially redistributed benefits and payments.

    How is poor Joe “cheated”?

  47. Ropelight, don’t forget you plan also excludes illegals, most criminals, and thank God most students. Now I’m starting to like it.

  48. The question remains: Why doesn’t SINP pay extra taxes over and above what he legally owes?

    Because he’s a laughable hypocrite, that’s why.

  49. “Poor Joe pays X percentage of his earnings in taxes. It amounts to Y nominal dollars. Poor Joe receives 8 dollars back from the Government for each 1 of the Y nominal dollars he pays in taxes – local, state, and federal – in socially redistributed benefits and payments.

    How is poor Joe “cheated”?”

    Well first of all, DNW, I throw your “morally insane” charge right back at you, for not taking into account the impact of all taxes on the middle and poor, while you support tax policies which in effect steal from them to favor the wealthy, which is exactly what the federal tax code does, and what GWB exacerbated by his tax cuts!

    Secondly, where is your documentation for your give 1 take 8 scenario? Moreover, even if documented, it would apply only to a very narrow income range of lower income families.

    Your position on this issue represents that of selfish and greedy people, therefore “morally insane”!

  50. The question continues: Why doesn’t SINP pay extra taxes over and above what he legally owes?

    Because his position on this issue represents that of selfish and greedy people, therefore “morally insane”!

  51. The amorality of people who demand others pay more in taxes alludes me. It also baffels me as to how people wanteven more of what othersd have earned.

    Let me gat this straight. Wagonwheel’s on the moral high ground demanding I give up what I earned? Interesting! I guess if one can buy global warming, a war on women, rampant racism everywhere one can believe himself morally superior for wanting to steal money from others claiming that those others whose money they want to steal are selfish and greedy for wanting to keep what they earned.

    What a terrible, horrible thought, owning one’s own property. How pre-pinko can one get?

  52. “Secondly, where is your documentation for your give 1 take 8 scenario? Moreover, even if documented, it would apply only to a very narrow income range of lower income families.”

    DNW dosen’t need documentation Wagonwheel, it was a hypothetical. Please keep up.

  53. “The amorality of people who demand others pay more in taxes alludes me. It also baffels me as to how people wanteven more of what othersd have earned.

    Let me gat this straight. Wagonwheel’s on the moral high ground demanding I give up what I earned? Interesting! I guess if one can buy global warming, a war on women, rampant racism everywhere one can believe himself morally superior for wanting to steal money from others claiming that those others whose money they want to steal are selfish and greedy for wanting to keep what they earned.

    What a terrible, horrible thought, owning one’s own property. How pre-pinko can one get?”

    Hoagie, if you want to regard me as being on the moral high ground, thank you! Obviously, you have not been influenced.

    I fail to understand how you wingnuts think only in terms of having money you earned stolen from you. That’s exactly what you folks keep saying! Seems kind of arrogant and self-centered to me.

    I look on it as our government designing aid programs to help people in need, therefore putting my taxes to good use, supplementing that which I voluntarily contribute to charities and such, and that which I contribute in service to my community and country.

    I believe in the concept that it takes a village to ….

    I also believe in Christ’s model for helping those in need.

    I just don’t understand your attitude, this idea of stealing your earnings from you, Hoagie!

  54. SINP writes

    I fail to understand how you wingnuts think only in terms of having money you earned stolen from you.

    Well lookie there — a personal attack in the form of the epithet “wingnut.” The aggressive must in control of SINP now. And why can’t you understand the “stolen” part? The income tax, etc. weren’t even made constitutional until the early 20th century. The Founders knew something you obviously didn’t.

    I look on it as our government designing aid programs to help people in need, therefore putting my taxes to good use, supplementing that which I voluntarily contribute to charities and such, and that which I contribute in service to my community and country.

    I believe in the concept that it takes a village to ….

    Yet you don’t pay any extra in taxes to do just this. What a surprise from a prize hypocrite.

    I also believe in Christ’s model for helping those in need.

    Did Christ believe in stealing from others in order to give to others?

  55. Wagonwheel says:

    April 11, 2012 at 12:08

    “Poor Joe pays X percentage of his earnings in taxes. It amounts to Y nominal dollars. Poor Joe receives 8 dollars back from the Government for each 1 of the Y nominal dollars he pays in taxes – local, state, and federal – in socially redistributed benefits and payments.

    How is poor Joe “cheated”?”

    Well first of all, DNW, I throw your “morally insane” charge right back at you, for not taking into account the impact of all taxes on the middle and poor, while you support tax policies which in effect steal from them to favor the wealthy,

    If some of the poor receive back in social goods and services and financial disbursements more than they actually pay in taxes – which you grudgingly acknowledge to probably be the case with some portion of them – how are they being stolen from?

  56. Hoagie says:
    April 11, 2012 at 12:46

    “Secondly, where is your documentation for your give 1 take 8 scenario? Moreover, even if documented, it would apply only to a very narrow income range of lower income families.”

    DNW dosen’t need documentation Wagonwheel, it was a hypothetical. Please keep up.”

    Yes, you are right. It was formulated as a hypothetical, an “if then”, because although this assertion has been made by researchers, we only need one stipulative or granted case in order to examine the moral structure of Perry’s claim once granting that hypothetical for the sake of argument and analysis.

    If he denies that there is even one such case, all we need to do is produce one such instance.

    If he says that such cases are rare, he must answer whether these “rare” cases are egregious violations of his own moral schema and counter examples to his claim of the poor being cheated, but nonetheless “ignorable” for some reason (as some lefties like to argue), or he must say on what grounds they are not in fact counter instances to his claim of the poor being cheated.

    Once we have that nailed down, i.e., the explicit and paradigmatic basis upon which he levels his judgments as to what constitutes being stolen from vis-a-vis taxes and returns and what doesn’t, then, we can take a look at what empirical research might have been done or what generally available statistics might imply as to the actual size of the un-cheated poor population in question.

    But for now, all we need to know is: if there were such a case, on what tax “payment versus value received grounds” would Perry have for claiming a such a person (who paid one and received eight back) was being stolen from?

  57. WW wrote:

    “But, of course, the man making $100,000 also pays income taxes, and at a higher marginal rate than the man making $50,000, while the man making $15,000 isn’t paying any federal income taxes at all. It isn’t that our tax system is “regressive,” but that it’s not as “progressive” as you believe it should be.”

    No, Mr Editor, you are wrong again. Let’s take the SS tax: The $1M earner pays the same amount as the $100 earner, a lower percentage of his income. Thus, SS tax is regressive. In a similar manner, all flat taxes are regressive, because they impact lower income earners more than upper income earners. Therefore, based on your stated position, I would call you the whiner, Mr Editor!

    No, I am quite correct. The definition of a “regressive” tax isn’t that it impacts lower income earners more, but is defined by whether the tax rates are higher, lower or the same for lower income earners. You are trying to redefine the word, and that won’t fly.

    Note the definitions: a progressive tax is:

    Tax levied at a rate that increases as the quantity subject to taxation increases. Designed to collect a greater proportion of tax revenue from wealthy people, progressive taxes reflect the view that those who are able to pay more should carry a heavier share of the tax burden. Progressive income taxes may provide for exemption from tax liability for incomes under a specified amount, or they may establish progressively greater rates for larger and larger incomes.

    A regressive tax is:

    Tax levied at a rate that decreases as its base increases. Regressivity is considered undesirable because poorer people pay a greater percentage of their income in tax than wealthier people. Consumption taxes and sales taxes are usually considered regressive because of their set rate structures. Tobacco, gasoline, and liquor sales taxes, all major sources of tax revenue, are the most regressive taxes. In an effort to limit regressivity, a number of U.S. states have exempted medicine and grocery items from sales tax. Although the property tax is sometimes judged regressive because poorer people spend a larger percentage of their income on housing than wealthier people, property taxes are nonetheless effective in redistributing wealth from higher to lower income groups.

    Both of those definitions are based upon the rate structure, and not whether such taxes have a greater or lesser impact on the taxpayer. The impact may be the motive that some consider when trying to set progressive tax rates, but it is not part of the definition.

    It is my belief that everybody should be taxed at the same rate, period, and I do not give a rat’s ass about whether such has a lesser or greater “impact” on any particular taxpayer; it should not be the business of the government to try to redistribute income, or alleviate hardship, Everybody should be treated the same, period, under the law, and the tax structure is part of the law.

  58. Well first of all, DNW, I throw your “morally insane” charge right back at you, for not taking into account the impact of all taxes on the middle and poor, while you support tax policies which in effect steal from them to favor the wealthy, which is exactly what the federal tax code does, and what GWB exacerbated by his tax cuts!

    Um, you DO know that the biggest tax cuts (as a percent basis) under Bush went to the middle class, right?

  59. “It is my belief that everybody should be taxed at the same rate, period, and I do not give a rat’s ass about whether such has a lesser or greater “impact” on any particular taxpayer; it should not be the business of the government to try to redistribute income, or alleviate hardship, Everybody should be treated the same, period, under the law, and the tax structure is part of the law.”

    Let’s pause for a moment while I dredge up an atheist to charge you with impiety.

    Odd too how Perry is so anxious to talk about the civic and moral implications of “disproportionate” impact when construed as a negative; but flees from confronting disproportionate benefit considered as a return on “contribution”.

    Well, no it’s not odd. It’s his strategy. he will boldly demand evidence, and then when he sees where the provided evidence will lead him, abandon that tack , and decamp for another thread.

    It’s only about “push back”, after all.

  60. “Odd too how Perry is so anxious to talk about the civic and moral implications of “disproportionate” impact when construed as a negative; but flees from confronting disproportionate benefit considered as a return on “contribution”.”

    Right, “disporportionate benefit considered as a return on contribution”, like credit default swaps, like mortgages granted to the unqualified, like investment banks betting against the advice given to clients, like yearly income in the billions and hundreds of millions for these thugs, these are the kinds of contributions which turn DNW on in praise!

  61. “Well, no it’s not odd. It’s his strategy. he will boldly demand evidence, and then when he sees where the provided evidence will lead him, abandon that tack , and decamp for another thread.”

    Here is DNW, dealing in abstractions again, thus providing no material evidence for discussion. What good is this, DNW?

  62. Wagonwheel says:
    April 12, 2012 at 10:45

    “Well, no it’s not odd. It’s his strategy. he will boldly demand evidence, and then when he sees where the provided evidence will lead him, abandon that tack , and decamp for another thread.”

    Here is DNW, dealing in abstractions again, thus providing no material evidence for discussion. What good is this, DNW?”

    You claimed to be a scientist. Answer your own question.

  63. Debating an abstraction is a waste of time, like: God is real. The existence of a god is an abstraction about which debate is useless. However, expressing one’s faith in God may well be a meaningful topic of discussion.

  64. Wagonwheel says:
    April 12, 2012 at 10:43

    “Odd too how Perry is so anxious to talk about the civic and moral implications of “disproportionate” impact when construed as a negative; but flees from confronting disproportionate benefit considered as a return on “contribution”.”

    Right, “disporportionate benefit considered as a return on contribution”, like credit default swaps, like mortgages granted to the unqualified, like …”

    Not at all, expect in a tenuous sense maybe, where the government pressure to grant mortgages to the unqualified. That of course would work against your claim that the less competent were being cheated.

    But largely no. Instead, though you persist in trying to deflect, it is about “Disproportionate benefit considered as a return on contribution” more directly: as the financial aid and support and services and redistributed income received by the lowest quintile when compared to their aggregate tax “contributions”.

    Now, you have been yammering about the injustice of a “disproportionate impact”. You have been focusing on the relative value of a dollar of disposable income to the poor, versus the relative value of a retained dollar to the rich, and making a moral calculation which says that the proportion of their dollars paid in taxes in value is relatively larger than the proportion paid by the rich, and that that is evidence they are being cheated by regressive tax policy.

    On the other hand their proportion of direct benefits and services they receive is vastly disproportionate to the dollars they pay in taxes. Thus, an extraordinarily regressive benefits policy. A clear violation of the principle of equality before the law of political peers.

    According to some, it is in the ratio of 8 dollars of government dispensed benefits received for every dollar of taxes paid.

    What calculation do you use in order to ground your claim that such people, receiving eight dollars in benefits in ratio to every dollar paid in “contributions” are being cheated by tax policy?

  65. Wagonwheel says:
    April 12, 2012 at 11:11

    Debating an abstraction is a waste of time, like: God is real. The existence of a god is an abstraction about which debate is useless. However, expressing one’s faith in God may well be a meaningful topic of discussion.”

    An abstraction is merely a case “lifted out” from its particulars for ease of examination. If you were a scientist, you would know the role abstractions and hypotheticals ( “if, then”) play in the analysis of cases.

    In this instance, the case is a moral and justice claim that you have been making.

    You have been saying that the poor are being screwed because they pay taxes out of their relatively more precious [in terms of mere numbers if not always in terms of earning effort expended] dollars.

    However, for each dollar they spend in taxes, the claim has been made that they receive in benefits and redistribution a return of eight times.

    If this claim is true, how does your moral calculus still hold?

  66. “Considering the importance and responsibility of both, their gross incomes are relatively modest, especially the Bidens.”

    Considering the worthlessness of either one and the absolute harm they have positively wrought, they are both grossly overcompensated.

    Nice try at an evasion though. Clock is still ticking by the way. You default to admitting you that you cannot explain you moral calculus in several more minutes. LOL

  67. “However, for each dollar they spend in taxes, the claim has been made that they receive in benefits and redistribution a return of eight times.

    If this claim is true, how does your moral calculus still hold?”

    Assuming the claim is correct, the situation of need of these poor families justifies the “moral calculus” to which you refer here.

    Look here:

    “WASHINGTON — Another 2.6 million people slipped into poverty in the United States last year, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday, and the number of Americans living below the official poverty line, 46.2 million people, was the highest number in the 52 years the bureau has been publishing figures on it.

    ….

    The bureau’s findings were worse than many economists expected, and brought into sharp relief the toll the past decade — including the painful declines of the financial crisis and recession —had taken on Americans at the middle and lower parts of the income ladder. It is also fresh evidence that the disappointing economic recovery has done nothing for the country’s poorest citizens.

    The report said the percentage of Americans living below the poverty line last year, 15.1 percent, was the highest level since 1993. (The poverty line in 2010 for a family of four was $22,314.)”

    I challenge any family of four to be able to survive on $22,314 without receiving any government/charitable aid. Take about $2,800 (ss tax + medicare premium + state income tax + local tax) which leaves $19,532 to pay for the basics, about $375 per week.

    Please explain to me, DNW, how you, wife, and two children would survive on this? We are talking here about 46 million people, a little less than 12 million families.

    And by the way, a minimum wage of $8/hr amounts to a gross of $16,640 per year, almost $6k below the poverty line.

    This is where we are in America, with the rich getting richer and more falling into poverty!

    Surprised, DNW?

  68. “A family of 4 living on 24k a year already get all their FICA and Medicare taxes back in the form of an Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) on their Federal filing.”

    OK, that would be $1261, which really is not a significant change: $19532 + 1261 = $20,793, or $400 per week to support a family of four.

    PS: Btw, the calculator I used is here.

  69. Wagonwheel says:
    April 13, 2012 at 13:53

    “However, for each dollar they spend in taxes, the claim has been made that they receive in benefits and redistribution a return of eight times.

    If this claim is true, how does your moral calculus still hold?”

    Assuming the claim is correct, the situation of need of these poor families justifies the “moral calculus” to which you refer here.”

    You seem to have lost your place. The moral calculus you were going to explain was how they were being cheated by receiving back in social goods and services and transfers, eight dollars of return for every dollar they paid.

  70. You know Perry, your “disproportionate” burden argument: and you explaining exactly how you balance your disproportion evaluation principle on the burden side, against the disproportionate result on the benefit side when considering the same subject population.

  71. WW wrote:

    The 2011 tax returns of the POTUS and VPOTUS have just been released.

    Considering the importance and responsibility of both, their gross incomes are relatively modest, especially the Bidens.

    It is noteworthy that the Obama’s contributed about 22% of their gross income to charity!

    And, let’s see, the Obamas took advantage of every possible deduction, and gave each of their daughters $24,000 in tax-free gifts; this lowered the Obama’s total federal tax. Or, put bluntly, they did exactly what conservatives think people should do: pay lower taxes and use charitable contributions instead. How ’bout that. You, of course, should disapprove, but, since it was the Obamas, I’m sure that you don’t.

  72. WW wrote:

    Look here:

    “WASHINGTON — Another 2.6 million people slipped into poverty in the United States last year, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday, and the number of Americans living below the official poverty line, 46.2 million people, was the highest number in the 52 years the bureau has been publishing figures on it.

    ….

    The bureau’s findings were worse than many economists expected, and brought into sharp relief the toll the past decade — including the painful declines of the financial crisis and recession —had taken on Americans at the middle and lower parts of the income ladder. It is also fresh evidence that the disappointing economic recovery has done nothing for the country’s poorest citizens.

    The report said the percentage of Americans living below the poverty line last year, 15.1 percent, was the highest level since 1993. (The poverty line in 2010 for a family of four was $22,314.)

    I challenge any family of four to be able to survive on $22,314 without receiving any government/charitable aid. Take about $2,800 (ss tax + medicare premium + state income tax + local tax) which leaves $19,532 to pay for the basics, about $375 per week.

    Hmmm. And just who has been President of the United States for the past three years and three months?

    President Obama had a compliant Congress thoroughly controlled by the Democrats, and though the Republicans tried to stop him, got all of his major legislative programs passed. He got Lily Ledbetter, he got the porkulus plan, he got ObumbleCare and he got Dudd-Frank, all passed, despite Republican opposition. He asked for responsibility for the economy and he got responsibility for the economy, yet more people are living in poverty.

    But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to predict that you will say that more Americans living in poverty aren’t his faulty, aren’t his responsibility. No, it’ll still be the fault of the guy who has been out of office for over three years.

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