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Old 02-25-2008, 07:42 PM   #61
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Originally posted by MadelynIris
BVS,

The Deal or No Deal thing was a joke.

But what if you worked for 30 years to build a company, sell it for $1M, say for your retirement, but the governemnt took $450k of that, you'd be ok with that? Seems a bit over the top to me, but...
As someone who has worked hard for 20 years and still earns the type of salary that makes a lump sum of $550K look like Bill Gates' entire bank account, I would say "get over it."
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Old 02-26-2008, 11:11 PM   #62
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I believe in low taxes. But at the same time I believe in getting rid of garbage spending, such as the War in Iraq.

One thing I don't understand is why the middle and lower classes get taxed at all? These people work very hard and then on top of that they have to get taxed. I say bring their tax rate as close to 0% as possible. Something I don't understand at all is that people want to raise taxes on the rich to 40%, or 50% or 60% in order to subsidize healthcare for the poor and middle class. But if we want to really help the middle class and poor, why are we taxing them in the first place???????

We should also get rid of Social Security. The people who have paid Social Security all these years should get their fair share back. But people should be allowed to use their money in their own way to fund retirement.

But nobody's taxes are going lower until we cut enough spending. It is just ridiculous.
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Old 02-27-2008, 12:17 AM   #63
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Why would you punish people who are successful? Those who invested big money to become doctors or whatever... Why would you expect them to pay more than their fair share?

Flat rate I say. Keep it simple.
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Old 02-27-2008, 12:30 AM   #64
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What do you mean "punish" them?

And not everyone who "invested big money" on their career preparation makes a big income (humanities and social sciences PhDs for example )...
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Old 02-27-2008, 12:48 AM   #65
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Originally posted by MadelynIris
Why would you punish people who are successful? Those who invested big money to become doctors or whatever... Why would you expect them to pay more than their fair share?
I don't expect them to pay more than their fair share; I expect them to actually pay it. Since the elite, arguably, get greater access and use disproportionately more resources than the rest of us, then you should start paying your "fair share"--which is proportionately more than us.

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Flat rate I say. Keep it simple.
And I always love the "flat tax" math, where rich people pay half of what they're paying now (35%-->18%), while the poorest end up paying more than double (8%-->18%).

I have never ever ever seen anyone go to the poor house over paying income taxes. Frankly, as much as I'm irritated over the idea of an overtaxed society, I'm equally irritated by those who don't know when enough is enough on cutting them. None of us like paying them--we get it. However, our tax rates, in general, are highly competitive, compared to the rest of the industrialized world, and I don't believe it to be in our best interest to continue cutting taxes and raising our national debt even further. Someone has to pay for this war, and since the poor, overwhelmingly, pay for it with their labor (military), I guess the elite, who seem to stand to benefit from a democratic Iraq the most (oil), should pay for it out of their pockets.

It's only fair, after all.
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Old 02-27-2008, 12:58 AM   #66
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Originally posted by Infinitum98
But if we want to really help the middle class and poor, why are we taxing them in the first place???????
The problem with this argument is that it buys into the bullshit logic that we're "poor," because we're "taxed." No, we're "poor," because our cost of living continues to rise, while our salaries continue to stagnate. Corporate CEOs aren't rich on "tax breaks"; no, they're rich, because they get a paycheck fatter than the rest of us.

Let's stop blaming government for all of our woes, and admit that business is increasingly not living up to its end of the traditional social contract. That used to mean paying people a decent wage and giving them full health benefits. Now neither is a guarantee, and despite all the "tax breaks" given to businesses, they're still cutting labor and raising worker out-of-pocket health costs. Taxes are not our problem.

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We should also get rid of Social Security. The people who have paid Social Security all these years should get their fair share back. But people should be allowed to use their money in their own way to fund retirement.
Right. Do you remember why Social Security was instituted in the first place? It's because there were too many impoverished seniors who were too old and/or sick to work.

Secondly, one reason our stock market works so well is because it feeds off of a large population of stupid investors--i.e., people who buy high and sell low, those who let their financial planners sell them a high-fee investment, etc. Now just imagine letting this large population of "stupid investors" invest their Social Security money? Guaranteed, most of them--like society today--will either save not enough money to retire or will invest it poorly, and we'll go back to before the 1930s with impoverished seniors. Now guess who will complain to Congress when that happens? Then we'll get an even more expensive bailout, at that point.

Social Security, today, isn't supposed to make you live wealthy; it's supposed to make you live on the bare essentials. And for the most part? It works.

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But nobody's taxes are going lower until we cut enough spending. It is just ridiculous.
Agreed, but where do we cut? Odds are, everyone will want to cut what "the Others" are using, but, likewise, will want to make sure that they're getting their money's worth. That's why pork projects never die.
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Old 02-27-2008, 02:22 AM   #67
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Originally posted by melon


The problem with this argument is that it buys into the bullshit logic that we're "poor," because we're "taxed." No, we're "poor," because our cost of living continues to rise, while our salaries continue to stagnate. Corporate CEOs aren't rich on "tax breaks"; no, they're rich, because they get a paycheck fatter than the rest of us.

Let's stop blaming government for all of our woes, and admit that business is increasingly not living up to its end of the traditional social contract. That used to mean paying people a decent wage and giving them full health benefits. Now neither is a guarantee, and despite all the "tax breaks" given to businesses, they're still cutting labor and raising worker out-of-pocket health costs. Taxes are not our problem.

But that is what i'm saying. I'm saying that the middle class is working very hard for their money, and the money that they have they need to live, we can all agree on that. So why tax the middle class is what i'm saying. I understand that the cost of living continues to rise, that inflation hurts the middle class more than anyone becasue wages have lagging growth. But I'm saying that since they have all these problems to deal with, why tax them? Or at least why not cut their taxes as much as possible. It doesn't make sense to me when people say that we should subsidize their healthcare, education, etc., when we are taxing them in the first place.

Quote:
Originally posted by melon


Right. Do you remember why Social Security was instituted in the first place? It's because there were too many impoverished seniors who were too old and/or sick to work.

Secondly, one reason our stock market works so well is because it feeds off of a large population of stupid investors--i.e., people who buy high and sell low, those who let their financial planners sell them a high-fee investment, etc. Now just imagine letting this large population of "stupid investors" invest their Social Security money? Guaranteed, most of them--like society today--will either save not enough money to retire or will invest it poorly, and we'll go back to before the 1930s with impoverished seniors. Now guess who will complain to Congress when that happens? Then we'll get an even more expensive bailout, at that point.

Social Security, today, isn't supposed to make you live wealthy; it's supposed to make you live on the bare essentials. And for the most part? It works.

Yes, I agree about the stock market. But just because there is Social Security, it doesn't mean people won't be stupid with their money. Just look at the situation now. People were too speculative about home prices, others took out Subprime ARM's and other risky loans. A lot of people are going bankrupt and getting put out of their homes. And one problem that has always been there for our country is Credit Card Debt. And besides that, Social Security is bankrupt anyway. If anything, people should be given the choice of whether they want to contribute to Social Security or not. Just because some people are going to be stupid with their money it is not fair to make everyone join into this program where everyone is required give money to a bankrupt fund for 45 years until they retire.

And since your brought up the stock market issue, why not regulate that through the government? If a large proportion of investors are stupid, why are we allowing people to freely invest quite speculatively in the first place? Should the government be our financial advisor? That idea is crazy, and people do go bankrupt and lose their life savings in stock market crashes. So the problem still exists.

[/B][/QUOTE]

Quote:
Originally posted by melon


Agreed, but where do we cut? Odds are, everyone will want to cut what "the Others" are using, but, likewise, will want to make sure that they're getting their money's worth. That's why pork projects never die.
You are right, the problem is that everyone wants everyone else to cut. We can start cutting with the obvious example of the trillion dollar war in Iraq. We spend more on the military than the entire world combined, we can definitely cut a chunk of that. We have troops stationed in I think more than a hundred countries or so, we can cut a lot of that. We can stop subsidizing the oil companies. And with the pork spending, it may be hard to cut a lot of that, most politicians are useless in helping to cut this sort of spending, but of course if we had someone like Ron Paul or John McCain or anyone serious about cutting spending in the White House, we can get cutting spending.



And for the long term, we need a person or persons in power who are willing to encourage research in science: both alternative energy and medicine. These sort of measures will help our energy and healthcare costs in the future.
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Old 02-27-2008, 05:10 AM   #68
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Quote:
Originally posted by MadelynIris
Why would you punish people who are successful? Those who invested big money to become doctors or whatever... Why would you expect them to pay more than their fair share?

Flat rate I say. Keep it simple.
I support a flat rate, absolutely. No problem at all with that.

That said, it will never happen in the near future and thusly, I'll defer to the most successful people I can possibly think of, say, Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.

They were given HUUUUGE tax breaks by the Bush admin.
To the point where, (perhaps this was even before the tax cut) Buffet likes to relay the story about paying a smaller tax rate than his own secretary.

I support a flat tax rate, I think it's quite frankly un-american that people pay more taxes per the money they earn but I also think that as part of the give and take of our free market, they should have a direct responsibilty in the people making their products and the product itself. They are shipping these jobs elsewhere (thank you NAFTA) so if they can assfuck the blue collar job market, I'm saying they can pay higher taxes for this shit. That subverts the true free American market, some corps are building blah-blahs in China for 20 cents and selling them here for 3 dollars. Maybe it costs a dollar to make an American build the exact same thing, that's the buy-in to the American Free Market. You can't have the cake and eat it too. Conservatives are all about fairness until it comes to their money or their holy book. If you opt out of the fairness give and take, you pay the ridiculous tax rate.

In other words, I support a flat tax rate for all, I support an assraping tax rate for those who are gutting the American workforce, which these days is almost all big corps. So a belated YAY Democrats! I guess.
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Old 02-27-2008, 08:48 AM   #69
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Originally posted by Infinitum98
But that is what i'm saying. I'm saying that the middle class is working very hard for their money, and the money that they have they need to live, we can all agree on that. So why tax the middle class is what i'm saying. I understand that the cost of living continues to rise, that inflation hurts the middle class more than anyone becasue wages have lagging growth. But I'm saying that since they have all these problems to deal with, why tax them? Or at least why not cut their taxes as much as possible. It doesn't make sense to me when people say that we should subsidize their healthcare, education, etc., when we are taxing them in the first place.
Because there's so many of them, meaning they add up to a decent percentage of our tax revenue, while eliminating their taxes completely will not eliminate their financial woes. Most poorer people already pay comparatively little in taxes after taking into account tax refunds.

But secondly, having a class of people who pay no taxes at all means that you have an utterly apathetic class of people who have unrealistic expectations in government. Hence, our "clergy class," for the most part. It's a pretty nice luxury to not have to worry about things like the job market and tax bills and focus solely on abortion! If anything, if all these priests and ministers had to pay taxes like the rest of us, I have a feeling that they'd be a little more down-to-earth.

Quote:
Yes, I agree about the stock market. But just because there is Social Security, it doesn't mean people won't be stupid with their money. Just look at the situation now. People were too speculative about home prices, others took out Subprime ARM's and other risky loans. A lot of people are going bankrupt and getting put out of their homes. And one problem that has always been there for our country is Credit Card Debt. And besides that, Social Security is bankrupt anyway. If anything, people should be given the choice of whether they want to contribute to Social Security or not. Just because some people are going to be stupid with their money it is not fair to make everyone join into this program where everyone is required give money to a bankrupt fund for 45 years until they retire.
Social Security's "dire" scenarios generally peak at a certain point, then go down afterward. But we only hear about the "peak" in the news. It will take, at most, temporary financial discipline to keep it going.

My problem with letting people opt-out of Social Security is that, guaranteed, a large percentage of people who think that they can manage their money better will screw it up and then beg the government to bail them out, not to mention that it will invite all the usual scams that surround investing, in general. I just think that it opens a can of worms that we are just best not to open. I think of it as an insurance policy, while I still generously contribute to my 401K. I am certainly not expecting to live solely on Social Security income.

Quote:
And since your brought up the stock market issue, why not regulate that through the government? If a large proportion of investors are stupid, why are we allowing people to freely invest quite speculatively in the first place? Should the government be our financial advisor? That idea is crazy, and people do go bankrupt and lose their life savings in stock market crashes. So the problem still exists.
Because our entire stock market system is predicated on the existence of stupid investors? Without them, who would run up a stock price so that savvy investors can then sell for a substantial profit? Who would also oversell a stock price so that savvy investors can then buy for a bargain?

These kinds of questions would certainly make a Marxist philosopher quite giddy.

Quote:
You are right, the problem is that everyone wants everyone else to cut. We can start cutting with the obvious example of the trillion dollar war in Iraq. We spend more on the military than the entire world combined, we can definitely cut a chunk of that. We have troops stationed in I think more than a hundred countries or so, we can cut a lot of that. We can stop subsidizing the oil companies. And with the pork spending, it may be hard to cut a lot of that, most politicians are useless in helping to cut this sort of spending, but of course if we had someone like Ron Paul or John McCain or anyone serious about cutting spending in the White House, we can get cutting spending.
Republicans, though, never cut any of those items. During Reagan's tenure, of course, for all his talk about "fiscal discipline" and "tax cuts," he's the one responsible for creating our multi-trillion dollar national debt in the first place, through his massive military spending. Further Republican presidents have only made that number substantially larger.

And why would Republicans betray their friends in the oil companies? Talk about an industry that certainly knows how to pay for their access.

Quote:
And for the long term, we need a person or persons in power who are willing to encourage research in science: both alternative energy and medicine. These sort of measures will help our energy and healthcare costs in the future.
I agree, but considering that the energy and health care industries are heavy campaign contributors and lobbyists for the status quo, I doubt we'll see either happen.

This is kind of back to my original idea about how those with disproportionate access and benefit from the government should pay more in taxes than the rest of us. And, yet, these seem to be the industries that get a free pass more often than not.
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Old 02-27-2008, 09:19 AM   #70
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They are shipping these jobs elsewhere (thank you NAFTA) so if they can assfuck the blue collar job market,
Everybody's favorite conservative president did that one. Good ol' Bill Clinton.
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Old 02-27-2008, 10:14 AM   #71
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The US doesn't like free trade, but thinks it is good for every single developing country.

But to be fair, the rest of the industrialised world is thinking (and doing) the same.
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Old 02-27-2008, 11:41 AM   #72
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Someone has to pay for this war, and since the poor, overwhelmingly, pay for it with their labor (military), I guess the elite, who seem to stand to benefit from a democratic Iraq the most (oil), should pay for it out of their pockets.It's only fair, after all.
I think you need to start throwing in some facts here instead of spouting off half truths. The brave men and women in our armed forces are from ALL ethnic as well as financial walks of life. Everyone in the ARMY is poor at the beginning. Many "Poor" people have found great success in the military and have gone to become great leaders. as far as Iraq goes, I don't really see your argument has any FACTS. It just continues to sound like a broken record. Halliburton, blood for oil, etc. The people who will benefit the most from a democratic Iraq are.......IRAQIS! They will be free to sell their oil to whoever they want! I'm still wainting to see the factual evidence regarding all the right wing conspiracies.
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Old 02-27-2008, 01:11 PM   #73
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Yeah, I'd like to see the numbers that show there is an equal percentage of poor, middle, upper middle, and the rich... good luck finding those.
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Old 02-27-2008, 02:42 PM   #74
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The brave men and women in our armed forces are from ALL ethnic as well as financial walks of life. Everyone in the ARMY is poor at the beginning.
Contradiction is truth.

Isn't it?
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Old 02-27-2008, 02:48 PM   #75
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We've talked about the demographics of the military in here before...that's a bit of a digression from the topic with this thread, though.
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