When is a Republican OK with a tax "increase"?

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    Aug 21, 2011 11:01 PM GMT
    When it involves workers' payroll, apparently. icon_mad.gif

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hcv66ONtPUG-K0C2EstqsYBU77yg?docId=5e01f49a8f5546578066437dd437299d
    WASHINGTON (AP) — News flash: Congressional Republicans want to raise your taxes. Impossible, right? GOP lawmakers are so virulently anti-tax, surely they will fight to prevent a payroll tax increase on virtually every wage-earner starting Jan. 1, right?

    Apparently not.

    Many of the same Republicans who fought hammer-and-tong to keep the George W. Bush-era income tax cuts from expiring on schedule are now saying a different "temporary" tax cut should end as planned. By their own definition, that amounts to a tax increase.
    ...
    "It's always a net positive to let taxpayers keep more of what they earn," says Rep. Jeb Hensarling, "but not all tax relief is created equal for the purposes of helping to get the economy moving again." The Texas lawmaker is on the House GOP leadership team


    Oh, and NOW they are worried about decreases in revenue from continuing an expiring tax cut.
    same article
    The 12-month tax reduction will cost the government about $120 billion this year, and a similar amount next year if it's renewed.

    That worries Rep. David Camp, R-Mich., chairman of the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee, and a member of the House-Senate supercommittee tasked with finding new deficit cuts. Tax reductions, "no matter how well-intended," will push the deficit higher, making the panel's task that much harder, Camp's office said.

    But Republican lawmakers haven't always worried about tax cuts increasing the deficit. They led the fight to extend the life of a much bigger tax break: the major 2001 income tax reduction enacted under Bush. It was scheduled to expire at the start of this year. Obama campaigned on a pledge to end the tax break only for the richest Americans, but solid GOP opposition forced him to back down.


    They even dub this "an Inferior Tax Cut."
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111904006104576502360686650914.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
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    Aug 21, 2011 11:12 PM GMT
    And just to be clear:
    OPSocial Security payroll taxes apply only to the first $106,800 of a worker's wages. Therefore, $2,136 is the biggest benefit anyone can gain from the one-year reduction.

    The great majority of Americans make less than $106,800 a year. Millions of workers pay more in payroll taxes than in federal income taxes.


    And why such a tax cut is going to boost consumption much more than extending the Bush tax cuts for high income people:

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/08/07/tax-cuts-and-spending-very-wonkish/Now what happens if a person in this situation receives a temporary rise in income? The budget line shifts out, again — and the kink moves directly to the right, taking consumption with it. So whereas someone who can borrow and lend freely will spend very little of a temporary rise in income, someone who is liquidity-constrained — wanting to spend more right now, but unable to borrow — will spend all of that temporary rise.

    That’s why unemployment benefits are an effective demand stimulus: the unemployed are highly likely to be suffering a temporary income loss but be unable to borrow cheaply. It’s also why tax cuts for working-class families may have some traction: a fair proportion of those families will be people having a bad year, but without assets or borrowing capacity to draw on.

    But temporary tax cuts for people with high incomes are likely to be highly ineffective: there are people with incomes over $250,000 who are having a temporary bad time and have neither assets to sell nor the ability to borrow, but they’re very much the exceptions to the rule.
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    Aug 22, 2011 12:12 AM GMT
    Moderate Republicans who have 'gone into the closet' would agree to higher taxes, such as doing away with the bush tax cuts for the wealthiest among us, and ending tax loop holes, taxing wall street income more equitably, ending corporate welfare and corporate tax shelters. Moderates have done it before, but the hell of it is that right now the TBaggers have a one track mind, paid for by the Koch Bro's who benefit from what they pay the Baggers to believe and demonstrate about. This being the case the Moderates 'stay in their closets' lest they lose their elections. Its a catch 22 situation for them.
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    Aug 22, 2011 12:18 AM GMT
    realifedad said Moderate Republicans who have 'gone into the closet' would agree to higher taxes, such as doing away with the bush tax cuts for the wealthiest among us, and ending tax loop holes, taxing wall street income more equitably, ending corporate welfare and corporate tax shelters. Moderates have done it before, but the hell of it is that right now the TBaggers have a one track mind, paid for by the Koch Bro's who benefit from what they pay the Baggers to believe and demonstrate about. This being the case the Moderates 'stay in their closets' lest they lose their elections. Its a catch 22 situation for them.


    I'm curious - how much tax is enough for the rich - should they pay for all government services? They already pay a disproportionate amount of taxes relative even to the income they generate.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903480904576512501087811480.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    The millionaires who are left still pay a mountain of tax. Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share. Before the recession, the $200,000 income group paid 54.5% of the income tax.


    On the other hand you have firms like GE who get clean energy tax breaks and practically every other corporate tax break possible that they lobby for who make billions but get billions in tax refunds. Obliterating loopholes and simplifying the tax code would save businesses billions of dollars and would effectively be a tax break while generating significantly more revenues.
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    Aug 22, 2011 12:22 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    realifedad said Moderate Republicans who have 'gone into the closet' would agree to higher taxes, such as doing away with the bush tax cuts for the wealthiest among us, and ending tax loop holes, taxing wall street income more equitably, ending corporate welfare and corporate tax shelters. Moderates have done it before, but the hell of it is that right now the TBaggers have a one track mind, paid for by the Koch Bro's who benefit from what they pay the Baggers to believe and demonstrate about. This being the case the Moderates 'stay in their closets' lest they lose their elections. Its a catch 22 situation for them.


    I'm curious - how much tax is enough for the rich - should they pay for all government services? They already pay a disproportionate amount of taxes relative even to the income they generate.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903480904576512501087811480.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    The millionaires who are left still pay a mountain of tax. Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share. Before the recession, the $200,000 income group paid 54.5% of the income tax.


    On the other hand you have firms like GE who get clean energy tax breaks and practically every other corporate tax break possible that they lobby for who make billions but get billions in tax refunds. Obliterating loopholes and simplifying the tax code would save businesses billions of dollars and would effectively be a tax break while generating significantly more revenues.


    Man you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.
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    Aug 22, 2011 1:08 AM GMT
    DoomsDayAlpaca said
    riddler78 said
    realifedad said Moderate Republicans who have 'gone into the closet' would agree to higher taxes, such as doing away with the bush tax cuts for the wealthiest among us, and ending tax loop holes, taxing wall street income more equitably, ending corporate welfare and corporate tax shelters. Moderates have done it before, but the hell of it is that right now the TBaggers have a one track mind, paid for by the Koch Bro's who benefit from what they pay the Baggers to believe and demonstrate about. This being the case the Moderates 'stay in their closets' lest they lose their elections. Its a catch 22 situation for them.


    I'm curious - how much tax is enough for the rich - should they pay for all government services? They already pay a disproportionate amount of taxes relative even to the income they generate.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903480904576512501087811480.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    The millionaires who are left still pay a mountain of tax. Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share. Before the recession, the $200,000 income group paid 54.5% of the income tax.


    On the other hand you have firms like GE who get clean energy tax breaks and practically every other corporate tax break possible that they lobby for who make billions but get billions in tax refunds. Obliterating loopholes and simplifying the tax code would save businesses billions of dollars and would effectively be a tax break while generating significantly more revenues.


    Man you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.



    Riddler, we could do away with Bush tax cuts and those you mention won't even have the second thought about keeping their BMW's or Cadillacs, they'll not suffer one bit now, no more than they did before Bush tax cuts.

    So I agree with DDalpaca, your sure hard on the middle and lower classes, but you did redeem yourself on your last statement saying that loopholes for billion dollar corps need to be done away with. That would greatly help.


    I sure don't expect that the rich can solve all our debt troubles, but letting them off the hook while expecting the debt troubles to be fixed by just cuts from programs that benefit the lowest incomes is certainly not a better solution. The rich and corps benefited from all the deregulation, the tax cuts and profited from the wars, so by god they can share in digging us out of this mess they helped make and are now the only ones gaining from at the expense of the masses.

    Our debt and economic troubles can only be fixed by a multi faceted plan to bring us out of this and Republicans are going to have to come around to what real compromising is and forget their no tax promises, because they are impractical at this point.
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    Aug 22, 2011 2:40 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidWhen is a Republican OK with a tax "increase"?

    Well, I'm not a Republican...


    icon_lol.gif

    It gets a bit funnier every time you say that and then regurgitate a stream of RNC talking points...
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    Aug 22, 2011 3:15 AM GMT
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.
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    Aug 22, 2011 3:24 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.


    Please post something to back up your relentless assertion that those with the highest incomes are "more productive" than those with lower incomes. Is Brad PItt more productive than a GM engineer? By what metric?
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    Aug 22, 2011 3:30 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.





    Riddler your embarassing yourself by such a statement as "man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you?"

    Are you fucking kidding me? US? Did you think before you typed that ? Have you ever been out in middle America? you show a real lack of understanding as to what middle America does to make things work for them, to have made such a statement that makes it appear that only the very rich "ARE ACTUALLY PRODUCTIVE". Your an amazing still wet behind the ears inexperienced boy, who knows very little about everyday Americans lives and how hard they work to keep up their families, or you would certainly have had better sense than to make such a demeaning statement.
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    Aug 22, 2011 4:10 AM GMT
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.


    Please post something to back up your relentless assertion that those with the highest incomes are "more productive" than those with lower incomes. Is Brad PItt more productive than a GM engineer? By what metric?


    By definition those who make more money are more economically productive. I'm sorry you have a problem with that. Some achieve income by chance - but this tends to be fleeting, but by and large I would suggest most achieve it - particularly income (assets is a different matter which can come from inheritance) through ideas, work, risk.

    The problem that you and others seem to have is that this idea that wealth is created through risk, work and ideas. That you would punish through tax those who create the most wealth - again by chance or because of more noble means seems a little petty and borne either of jealousy or a fundamental misunderstanding of the origins of wealth.
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    Aug 22, 2011 4:28 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.


    Please post something to back up your relentless assertion that those with the highest incomes are "more productive" than those with lower incomes. Is Brad PItt more productive than a GM engineer? By what metric?


    By definition those who make more money are more economically productive. I'm sorry you have a problem with that. Some achieve income by chance - but this tends to be fleeting, but by and large I would suggest most achieve it - particularly income (assets is a different matter which can come from inheritance) through ideas, work, risk.

    The problem that you and others seem to have is that this idea that wealth is created through risk, work and ideas. That you would punish through tax those who create the most wealth - again by chance or because of more noble means seems a little petty and borne either of jealousy or a fundamental misunderstanding of the origins of wealth.


    So you've got nothing, huh? You're entire argument is that people who are more productive are so because they are paid more and they're paid more because they are more productive? Did you study "Circular Argument 101" or were there advanced courses in bullshit at your university?

    I have no problem with the "idea that wealth is created through risk, work and ideas". Rather, I take exception at the fact that your beloved markets do not reward risk, work and ideas, but has devolved into the least free sort of crony capitalism imaginable.

    You've demonstrated relentlessly on here that you have contempt for anyone who engages in any manual labor, which leaves us with risk and ideas. What risk exists for the wealthy in the US? They own our government. They pay the lowest tax rate in 90 years. They have insulated themselves from anything approaching real regulation or responsibility for the bad outcomes of their risk or ideas. And, sure, some ideas are rewarded but most are suppressed to protect existing products.

    If you know anything about American capitalism you know that all the above is true. Yet you continue to bat for a team that probably doesn't even consider you a player.
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    Aug 22, 2011 4:31 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.


    Please post something to back up your relentless assertion that those with the highest incomes are "more productive" than those with lower incomes. Is Brad PItt more productive than a GM engineer? By what metric?


    By definition those who make more money are more economically productive. I'm sorry you have a problem with that. Some achieve income by chance - but this tends to be fleeting, but by and large I would suggest most achieve it - particularly income (assets is a different matter which can come from inheritance) through ideas, work, risk.

    The problem that you and others seem to have is that this idea that wealth is created through risk, work and ideas. That you would punish through tax those who create the most wealth - again by chance or because of more noble means seems a little petty and borne either of jealousy or a fundamental misunderstanding of the origins of wealth.






    You don't have much common sense to keep up this line of arrogant inexperienced rhetoric of yours, I suggest that you go live with some working people to learn what lifes all about. You apparently don't even have enough life experience to know better than to keep saying then adding to this line of bullshit.
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    Aug 22, 2011 4:45 AM GMT
    Um, when it is a tax on the poor with enough loopholes so that the rich don't have to pay?
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    Aug 22, 2011 7:15 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    DoomsDayAlpaca saidMan you really hate the middle and lower class don't you? The rich pay a "disproportionate" amount because they have a disproportionate amount. In terms of wealth, the bottom 50% of Americans don't even own 3% of it while the top 1% owns 33% of it.


    Man you really hate the people who are actually productive don't you? You confuse those who make a lot of money with those who have a lot of money. Those like Buffett wouldn't be "hurt" at all given that they already have their wealth in assets. Let's at least talk about apples to apples - ie why shouldn't income taxes be proportionate to income?

    I've noted that I'm for everyone paying - and high income earners already pay a significant disportionate amount to total incomes and obviously population. What the government needs is more people who pay taxes not to tax people more. Look at how much revenues have fallen from the rich in recent years because the "rich" / high income earners have just dropped dramatically in numbers.


    Please post something to back up your relentless assertion that those with the highest incomes are "more productive" than those with lower incomes. Is Brad PItt more productive than a GM engineer? By what metric?


    By definition those who make more money are more economically productive. I'm sorry you have a problem with that. Some achieve income by chance - but this tends to be fleeting, but by and large I would suggest most achieve it - particularly income (assets is a different matter which can come from inheritance) through ideas, work, risk.

    The problem that you and others seem to have is that this idea that wealth is created through risk, work and ideas. That you would punish through tax those who create the most wealth - again by chance or because of more noble means seems a little petty and borne either of jealousy or a fundamental misunderstanding of the origins of wealth.


    Taxes aren't punishments. They're there to allow a community to continue to flourish by offering more services to its citizens.
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    Aug 22, 2011 12:55 PM GMT
    Christian73 saidSo you've got nothing, huh? You're entire argument is that people who are more productive are so because they are paid more and they're paid more because they are more productive? Did you study "Circular Argument 101" or were there advanced courses in bullshit at your university?

    I have no problem with the "idea that wealth is created through risk, work and ideas". Rather, I take exception at the fact that your beloved markets do not reward risk, work and ideas, but has devolved into the least free sort of crony capitalism imaginable.

    You've demonstrated relentlessly on here that you have contempt for anyone who engages in any manual labor, which leaves us with risk and ideas. What risk exists for the wealthy in the US? They own our government. They pay the lowest tax rate in 90 years. They have insulated themselves from anything approaching real regulation or responsibility for the bad outcomes of their risk or ideas. And, sure, some ideas are rewarded but most are suppressed to protect existing products.

    If you know anything about American capitalism you know that all the above is true. Yet you continue to bat for a team that probably doesn't even consider you a player.


    Nothing? Do you understand what "by definition" means? You accuse me of economic illiteracy and yet you parade about objecting to what would otherwise be conventional wisdom in economics. "Productivity is a measure of output from a production process, per unit of input." Circular? Yeah blame the people who write the dictionaries. icon_rolleyes.gif

    "You've demonstrated relentlessly on here that you have contempt for anyone who engages in any manual labor"

    I've never demonstrated contempt for anyone who engages in any form of labor. Prove it.

    You act as if the world has remained largely static and the same rich have gotten richer and the same poor have gotten poorer as if we live in a world that hasn't changed in the past few decades. Too bad for you the statistics don't bear this out. The average fortune 500 company now is under younger than 40 years and falling. Have you heard of such companies as I dunno, Google, Cisco or even Microsoft? Where were they a few decades ago? Their founders?

    As for the wealthy, again I've asked you what percentage is enough? Given that they already pay a substantially disproportionate amount to the income they make. Do you understand the difference between assets and income?
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    Aug 22, 2011 1:00 PM GMT
    thecanadianone saidTaxes aren't punishments. They're there to allow a community to continue to flourish by offering more services to its citizens.


    Taxes aren't meant to be punishment in theory. Again here's the actual data:

    The millionaires who are left still pay a mountain of tax. Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share. Before the recession, the $200,000 income group paid 54.5% of the income tax.


    So here's my question: how much is enough? In a world where wealth is created - not taken from others, not redistributed, what's the logic in attempting to significantly and disproportionately taxing the most economically productive in society?

    ie given that they earn and create this wealth, why are we taxing them more than say those less productive and those who do less with opportunities in life? If you advocate taxing "the rich" even more - despite the fact they already pay disproportionately to their wealth and income, how can you not see that as punishment?
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    Aug 22, 2011 2:34 PM GMT
    riddler78 saidNothing? Do you understand what "by definition" means? You accuse me of economic illiteracy and yet you parade about objecting to what would otherwise be conventional wisdom in economics. "Productivity is a measure of output from a production process, per unit of input." Circular? Yeah blame the people who write the dictionaries. icon_rolleyes.gif

    "You've demonstrated relentlessly on here that you have contempt for anyone who engages in any manual labor"

    I've never demonstrated contempt for anyone who engages in any form of labor. Prove it.

    You act as if the world has remained largely static and the same rich have gotten richer and the same poor have gotten poorer as if we live in a world that hasn't changed in the past few decades. Too bad for you the statistics don't bear this out. The average fortune 500 company now is under younger than 40 years and falling. Have you heard of such companies as I dunno, Google, Cisco or even Microsoft? Where were they a few decades ago? Their founders?

    As for the wealthy, again I've asked you what percentage is enough? Given that they already pay a substantially disproportionate amount to the income they make. Do you understand the difference between assets and income?


    So two paragraphs wherein the "economic expert" whines about his inability to provide any evidence of those with higher incomes being more productive except an ideological definition that is virtually meaningless.

    In terms of contempt for laborers, see your opinions on union busting in Wisconsin and other states, your expectation that workers should accept subsistence wages (e.g ending minimum wage), opposition to Medicare and SS, which provide workers security in old age, and your general Randian philosophy which denigrates the majority of workers and lionizes the lucky few.

    The fact that wealth is not static doesn't mean it's being distributed in a fair way. It's not about a specific percentage. It's about those who have economic (and therefore political) power using same to ensure that they increasingly earn an higher proportion of wealth that is created not by them but by a huge swath of workers without whom their "risks" and "ideas" would never come to fruition.

    But since you asked, I think a fair tax system would progress similar to what Buffett has illustrated excepting that I would increase the rates for those who earned $500 million to 45%, $1 billion to 50%, and $5 billion to 60%. Of course, I would also advocate a nominal tax on all trades to bring down speculation.
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    Aug 23, 2011 9:03 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    thecanadianone saidTaxes aren't punishments. They're there to allow a community to continue to flourish by offering more services to its citizens.


    Taxes aren't meant to be punishment in theory. Again here's the actual data:

    The millionaires who are left still pay a mountain of tax. Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share. Before the recession, the $200,000 income group paid 54.5% of the income tax.


    So here's my question: how much is enough? In a world where wealth is created - not taken from others, not redistributed, what's the logic in attempting to significantly and disproportionately taxing the most economically productive in society?

    ie given that they earn and create this wealth, why are we taxing them more than say those less productive and those who do less with opportunities in life? If you advocate taxing "the rich" even more - despite the fact they already pay disproportionately to their wealth and income, how can you not see that as punishment?


    i dont see it as punishment because we don't all start off on equal ground. ever heard of "equal opportunity?" we all want jobs but guess what? there are way more people than there are jobs. people can't just magically "be productive" as you call it. i believe that a state should be measured not by its foreign policies but by how you measure the status of its own people. can they take care of their citizens? why is there such a staggering gap between the rich and the poor? do you know how much money can be raised with just small tax increases? why are people so afraid of taxes? i understand that taxes suck. no one likes paying them. but they provide all sorts of benefits to all. how are you supposed to update infrastructure without taxes? where does that money come from?
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    Aug 23, 2011 9:06 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    thecanadianone said
    Taxes aren't punishments. They're there to allow a community to continue to flourish by offering more services to its citizens.



    Socialism is alive and well with this 20 year old Canadian.

    How much in income taxes have you paid over the past 5 years?



    I pay my taxes every year like all working citizens should. And I'm happy to do it.
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    Aug 24, 2011 2:26 AM GMT
    thecanadianone said
    riddler78 said
    thecanadianone saidTaxes aren't punishments. They're there to allow a community to continue to flourish by offering more services to its citizens.


    Taxes aren't meant to be punishment in theory. Again here's the actual data:

    The millionaires who are left still pay a mountain of tax. Those who make $1 million accounted for about 0.2% of all tax returns but paid 20.4% of income taxes in 2009. Those with adjusted gross income above $200,000 a year were just under 3% of tax filers but paid 50.1% of the $866 billion in total personal income taxes. This means the top 3% paid more than the bottom 97%. Yet the 3% are the people that President Obama claims don't pay their fair share. Before the recession, the $200,000 income group paid 54.5% of the income tax.


    So here's my question: how much is enough? In a world where wealth is created - not taken from others, not redistributed, what's the logic in attempting to significantly and disproportionately taxing the most economically productive in society?

    ie given that they earn and create this wealth, why are we taxing them more than say those less productive and those who do less with opportunities in life? If you advocate taxing "the rich" even more - despite the fact they already pay disproportionately to their wealth and income, how can you not see that as punishment?


    i dont see it as punishment because we don't all start off on equal ground. ever heard of "equal opportunity?" we all want jobs but guess what? there are way more people than there are jobs. people can't just magically "be productive" as you call it. i believe that a state should be measured not by its foreign policies but by how you measure the status of its own people. can they take care of their citizens? why is there such a staggering gap between the rich and the poor? do you know how much money can be raised with just small tax increases? why are people so afraid of taxes? i understand that taxes suck. no one likes paying them. but they provide all sorts of benefits to all. how are you supposed to update infrastructure without taxes? where does that money come from?


    You've created/written all these strawmen arguments. I have never said that there shouldn't be taxes, but rather argued that the tax burden should be more equally shared instead of so disproportionately depending on the rich - who by definition are already more economically productive. Again I ask you - what is enough? You argue that the rich do not pay enough, but how much is enough given again, that they already pay far more than they earn as a percentage in society? You seem to have entirely disregarded the fact that the rich already pay more than their share of income.

    There are more people than jobs right now - but the amount someone earns is not simply random occurrence - particularly in our society. The gap between rich and poor does not matter so long as you recognize that wealth particularly in our society comes from a combination ideas, innovation and risk taking. It's created - just because someone is rich doesn't make another poor - in fact, by and large, the vast majority of wealth is created - ie did not exist before and it is governments that redistribute and consume wealth.

    I don't think people are afraid of taxes either - the problem is that both in the US and Canada we are seeing diminishing returns in the value to what we get for our taxes. If we have a responsibility to pay taxes, it is the government's responsibility to spend it well - and this is far from the case. For instance, did you know that Medicare in the US spends more per capita than Canada spends for ALL it's citizens despite the fact only a small fraction of Americans are even eligible for Medicare? A lot of these problems are complicated but to suggest that anyone is afraid of taxes or to wave your hand and argue that someone else should pay more taxes without first volunteering to pay proportionately more yourself seems both self serving and not particularly useful at all.
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    Aug 24, 2011 2:32 AM GMT
    Christian73 saidSo two paragraphs wherein the "economic expert" whines about his inability to provide any evidence of those with higher incomes being more productive except an ideological definition that is virtually meaningless.

    In terms of contempt for laborers, see your opinions on union busting in Wisconsin and other states, your expectation that workers should accept subsistence wages (e.g ending minimum wage), opposition to Medicare and SS, which provide workers security in old age, and your general Randian philosophy which denigrates the majority of workers and lionizes the lucky few.

    The fact that wealth is not static doesn't mean it's being distributed in a fair way. It's not about a specific percentage. It's about those who have economic (and therefore political) power using same to ensure that they increasingly earn an higher proportion of wealth that is created not by them but by a huge swath of workers without whom their "risks" and "ideas" would never come to fruition.

    But since you asked, I think a fair tax system would progress similar to what Buffett has illustrated excepting that I would increase the rates for those who earned $500 million to 45%, $1 billion to 50%, and $5 billion to 60%. Of course, I would also advocate a nominal tax on all trades to bring down speculation.


    Sorry Christian you have such a problem with definitions - it's a tautology to say that the rich are more economically productive. That's simply fact. They also pay most of all taxes collected in the US - disproportionately more than the income they make. That's also simply fact.

    As for my supposed contempt for workers? It's rather you who has such a weak understanding of markets so as to argue that it's better for the young to be unemployed and untrained than find work - as is caused by increased minimum wages. My opposition to Medicare and Social Security as they stand in their current programs is because of their unsustainability - which is unquestionable if you ask any actuary or economist, and because there are better alternatives given how inefficiently funds are spent - at least in Medicare. Denigrating the majority of workers? No Christian, that'd be you with the ridiculous policies that you advocate that make the poor worse off.

    You're the one who consistently argues for more regulations and bigger governments despite the fact it entrenches the existing rich and favors the incumbents.

    And finally, you set arbitrary percentages despite the fact the US already has the most progressive tax system in the world with the US government depending more on the rich than any other nation. That's simply fact.
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    Aug 24, 2011 3:00 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidSo two paragraphs wherein the "economic expert" whines about his inability to provide any evidence of those with higher incomes being more productive except an ideological definition that is virtually meaningless.

    In terms of contempt for laborers, see your opinions on union busting in Wisconsin and other states, your expectation that workers should accept subsistence wages (e.g ending minimum wage), opposition to Medicare and SS, which provide workers security in old age, and your general Randian philosophy which denigrates the majority of workers and lionizes the lucky few.

    The fact that wealth is not static doesn't mean it's being distributed in a fair way. It's not about a specific percentage. It's about those who have economic (and therefore political) power using same to ensure that they increasingly earn an higher proportion of wealth that is created not by them but by a huge swath of workers without whom their "risks" and "ideas" would never come to fruition.

    But since you asked, I think a fair tax system would progress similar to what Buffett has illustrated excepting that I would increase the rates for those who earned $500 million to 45%, $1 billion to 50%, and $5 billion to 60%. Of course, I would also advocate a nominal tax on all trades to bring down speculation.


    Sorry Christian you have such a problem with definitions - it's a tautology to say that the rich are more economically productive. That's simply fact. They also pay most of all taxes collected in the US - disproportionately more than the income they make. That's also simply fact.

    As for my supposed contempt for workers? It's rather you who has such a weak understanding of markets so as to argue that it's better for the young to be unemployed and untrained than find work - as is caused by increased minimum wages. My opposition to Medicare and Social Security as they stand in their current programs is because of their unsustainability - which is unquestionable if you ask any actuary or economist, and because there are better alternatives given how inefficiently funds are spent - at least in Medicare. Denigrating the majority of workers? No Christian, that'd be you with the ridiculous policies that you advocate that make the poor worse off.

    You're the one who consistently argues for more regulations and bigger governments despite the fact it entrenches the existing rich and favors the incumbents.

    And finally, you set arbitrary percentages despite the fact the US already has the most progressive tax system in the world with the US government depending more on the rich than any other nation. That's simply fact.


    Not a single thing you've claimed as fact is such. I could go through each of your points but I'm so bored with your relentless theoretical claims about markets and productivity - all of which are demonstrably false.
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    Aug 24, 2011 3:15 AM GMT
    Let's get back to the OP. Republicans currently are on record as opposing the extension of the payroll tax cut.
    This affects almost everyone, but is going to hit the lower income workers more.

    Enough said?