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RavenHawk

Taxing the Rich

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Who do you think is suggesting that, exactly?

Isn't that the idea behind Tax Fairness? If you can get the super rich to pay much higher taxes, then the fairness... the inequality index... would move toward being more "Fair" like it is in most of Europe. Which you, Tiggs, seemed to be trying to say would make us a better economicly stable nation. Reference... you saying, "Next stop Mexico".

How very J F Kennedy of you.

Perhaps you'd like to walk us through how you think it's achievable to reduce the income inequality in the US via modern day Conservative principles?

I did not say it was necessary. Just that I would aim at the lower percentages, who live in bad conditions, and lift them up, rather then trying to tear down people who are successful, simply for being successful.

How to bring up the bottom 10%?? Perhaps with nationally run training centers to educate and train people, rather then simply handing out a check each month. There are millions of structures across the US that are abandoned, and could be used to teach those who have no money and no hope. All that would be required is supplies and teachers. The teachers could be supplied by local business and those businesses would get a giant tax credit to do so. People would get trained and employed, and business would get taxes breaks, and abandoned buildings would get renovated and used. Hows that for a start? Not sure it is Conservative philosophy, but then I am not just a Conservative mouthpiece, I'm an individual thinking human being.

Saying, "Use conservatism to explain how to do this" is actually a devisive statement that implys there are only two ideologies and only one is right... Which is simply not true. There are a thousand shades of grey that should exist. The polization of politics is due to this demand to explain why one far Right, or far Left stand, is the better stand. When given only black or white and trying to figure out a grey solution, it is no wonder that everyone gets heated and intense. When it is most likely that somewhere in the middle is the best stand.

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Isn't that the idea behind Tax Fairness? If you can get the super rich to pay much higher taxes, then the fairness... the inequality index... would move toward being more "Fair" like it is in most of Europe. Which you, Tiggs, seemed to be trying to say would make us a better economicly stable nation. Reference... you saying, "Next stop Mexico".

But that's not what you said.

You said "So if we simply were to eliminate altogether the very top half percent. Seized their goods and wealth" - suggesting that we take all of their money and possessions by force.

If you can't see the difference between that and allowing a temporary tax cut to expire - a tax cut that was originally given to the rich on the basis that there was a budget surplus - then I'm not entirely sure what to tell you.

In terms of what income inequality does to a society - then Richard Wilkinson's TED talk is a perfect place to start. Simply put, however, shortening the distance between income levels makes things better - and it doesn't make any difference as to whether the top come down or the bottom go up in income. Just the relative difference between the two.

I did not say it was necessary. Just that I would aim at the lower percentages, who live in bad conditions, and lift them up, rather then trying to tear down people who are successful, simply for being successful.

How to bring up the bottom 10%?? Perhaps with nationally run training centers to educate and train people, rather then simply handing out a check each month. There are millions of structures across the US that are abandoned, and could be used to teach those who have no money and no hope. All that would be required is supplies and teachers. The teachers could be supplied by local business and those businesses would get a giant tax credit to do so. People would get trained and employed, and business would get taxes breaks, and abandoned buildings would get renovated and used. Hows that for a start? Not sure it is Conservative philosophy, but then I am not just a Conservative mouthpiece, I'm an individual thinking human being.

Interesting idea, right up until the "People will get trained and employed" part. It's that whole employment bit that I think you'll find might be somewhat tricky.

Like you (and JFK) I'd much rather that we lifted the bottom 10%. This chart, however, shows the reality of the last 50 years or so, It doesn't seem to matter which side of the aisle are in power - the guys at the bottom don't go anywhere.

household-incomes-mean-real.gif

Saying, "Use conservatism to explain how to do this" is actually a devisive statement that implys there are only two ideologies and only one is right... Which is simply not true. There are a thousand shades of grey that should exist. The polization of politics is due to this demand to explain why one far Right, or far Left stand, is the better stand. When given only black or white and trying to figure out a grey solution, it is no wonder that everyone gets heated and intense. When it is most likely that somewhere in the middle is the best stand.

The idea of compromise is fine - except you can't compromise on a Boolean decision. You either increase taxes or you don't.

The reason I asked you to use modern day Conservative principles is because I believed from your various posts that you were a modern day Conservative.

Apparently not. My Apologies.

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An inflation rate of less than 2% is stagflation. Said absolutely no economist, ever.

``We're right in the middle of it right now,' I think the `flation' part will heat up and I think the `stag' part will get worse.'' ~ Warren Buffett

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&refer=home&sid=amCCz4wNzVCE

Heck Peter Schiff even testified to it before the US Congress. So what you meant to say is, no economist that matters to your opinion ever-absolutely said it.

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A Warren Buffet quote from 4 years ago, pre-crash, is hardly relevant to today's economy.

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A Warren Buffet quote from 4 years ago, pre-crash, is hardly relevant to today's economy.

It is when you actually read the quote. But whatever, your claim was plain wrong. "Absolutely ever" it ain't.

Trusting ridiculous numbers from the government that you know full well don't reflect reality doesn't help the credibility of your inflation claim. On one hand you want to help lift the bottom 10%. On the other, you want to ignore the rampant inflation of the largest expense that poor people pay. Putting food in their mouths and staying alive! That is a conflict of interest and no, throwing more government biscuits at the problem isn't going to help any more than it's "helped" already.

The government has entire departments dedicated to these areas where prices inflate the most and that's not an amazing coincidence. Energy, Education, Agriculture. Thankfully we don't have a Department of Computers or my AMD 990FX mainboard would have run me $20,000, and yet if it was only 1% more expensive than it was last year, you'd be assuring me that there's nothing to worry about.

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It is when you actually read the quote. But whatever, your claim was plain wrong. "Absolutely ever" it ain't.

Y'know - if you really want to believe that the American economy is currently in a period of stagflation - that the rate of inflation is vastly outstripping the country's economic growth and that the Government is lying to you about the state of the economy - then be my guest.

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Y'know - if you really want to believe that the American economy is currently in a period of stagflation - that the rate of inflation is vastly outstripping the country's economic growth and that the Government is lying to you about the state of the economy - then be my guest.

It doesn't need to be "vastly" for my belief to coincide with my wallet, but yes, if you're hosting, I'll bring the wine.

It's not my belief that the CPI is a fudged number. Government blatantly admits hiding the true increases in the aggregate cost we must pay for living. You're using the CPI in your discussions like it's a good aggregate figure and you know it's not. It's deceiving you by hiding costs we MUST pay and including a lot of non-inflationary costs that we DON'T have to pay. No matter how many times or ways you're shown how bad inflation is out there, you just don't acknowledge it, and that stubborn acquiescence to the inflation tax doesn't serve the poor or middle class especially.

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It doesn't need to be "vastly" for my belief to coincide with my wallet, but yes, if you're hosting, I'll bring the wine.

It's not my belief that the CPI is a fudged number. Government blatantly admits hiding the true increases in the aggregate cost we must pay for living. You're using the CPI in your discussions like it's a good aggregate figure and you know it's not. It's deceiving you by hiding costs we MUST pay and including a lot of non-inflationary costs that we DON'T have to pay. No matter how many times or ways you're shown how bad inflation is out there, you just don't acknowledge it, and that stubborn acquiescence to the inflation tax doesn't serve the poor or middle class especially.

I know nothing of the sort.

Evidence, please, that the cost of living index is fraudulent.

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Trusting ridiculous numbers from the government that you know full well don't reflect reality doesn't help the credibility of your inflation claim.

That is a conflict of interest and no, throwing more government biscuits at the problem isn't going to help any more than it's "helped" already.

Those are two of the most sensible sentences I've read in a long time.

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Those are two of the most sensible sentences I've read in a long time.

Whereas, I prefer my economics without conspiracy theories.

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There is nothing conspiratorial about that. Government lies all the time and more government programs will not help more than they already have. All they do is keep the poor poor and take away more from the middle class. It takes from the rich too but the effect isn't as noticeable in their lives, not that that means its any more right either.

Edited by -Mr_Fess-

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There is nothing conspiratorial about that. Government lies all the time

Why would the Government lie about the rate of inflation? What is it, exactly, that you believe they have to gain from doing so?

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I don't think there's ever going to be a way to eliminate poverty. Every society in history has had obscenely rich people and bitterly poor people (unless they enslaved the poor, then they were gainfully employed, I guess). I think it's the cycle of civilization that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer until something breaks and you start all over again (not completely over, but there's a lot of turbulence). I believe this applies to any governmental system ever tried.

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I don't think there's ever going to be a way to eliminate poverty. Every society in history has had obscenely rich people and bitterly poor people (unless they enslaved the poor, then they were gainfully employed, I guess). I think it's the cycle of civilization that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer until something breaks and you start all over again (not completely over, but there's a lot of turbulence). I believe this applies to any governmental system ever tried.

I think you're right and that's why I'm tired of people who can't figure it out taking more money from our paychecks and telling me that's the solution as if they have figured it out.

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I think you're right and that's why I'm tired of people who can't figure it out taking more money from our paychecks and telling me that's the solution as if they have figured it out.

Well, there's something to be said for trying to stave off that collapse for as long as possible. As for taking money from your paycheck, I totally agree. Anyone who actually receives a paycheck who's not an executive for a multibillion dollar corporation probably doesn't fall into the obscenely rich category (forgive me if I'm making incorrect assumptions about your financial status).

The desire to make those obscenely rich pay more is a good thing (reducing that inequality tiggs was talking about). The problem is that the way people keep discussing to do so is by raising income tax - something obscenely rich people don't really pay anyway. Now, taking a good look at capital gains and taxing the use of corporate assets as something other than personal income would go a very long way toward actually making things equitable without increasing taxes noticabely for those who don't make their luxurious living off those things.

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Well, there's something to be said for trying to stave off that collapse for as long as possible. As for taking money from your paycheck, I totally agree. Anyone who actually receives a paycheck who's not an executive for a multibillion dollar corporation probably doesn't fall into the obscenely rich category (forgive me if I'm making incorrect assumptions about your financial status).

The desire to make those obscenely rich pay more is a good thing (reducing that inequality tiggs was talking about). The problem is that the way people keep discussing to do so is by raising income tax - something obscenely rich people don't really pay anyway. Now, taking a good look at capital gains and taxing the use of corporate assets as something other than personal income would go a very long way toward actually making things equitable without increasing taxes noticabely for those who don't make their luxurious living off those things.

We are going to disagree about the inequality here because I think the gov won't solve it taking from me or richie rich, which I am not btw. I think it always hurts the average joe and encourages the wealthy to take their business elsewhere and we need their money and their business to stay here. I think the poor never having to do anything but stay poor is never going to help the poor.

And I'm pretty sure obamacare has a capital gains tax hike in it. If I'm not mistaking, it's gone from 15%-35%. So for me, as a middle-class guy I am, or will be if the hike is true, fully discouraged to make any investments that can't pay out enormously. What I'm saying is that its not only rich guys who can make capital gains investments. I'm in construction for a living and I'd love nothing more than to find a house to flip and turn a big profit. But that extra 20% hike in taxes, plus all the labor and payroll taxes and other general costs of dong business really make the ROI so much less appealing. Hell, if anything, now that I'm thinking about it, raising capital gains tax ensures that almost only rich people can get in on that game because they're going to be the only ones who can afford to make the expensive investments that turn the gigantic profits. Small investments won't be worth it to them and will be unaffordable for middle of the road guys like myself. So I'll label that as yet another example of liberalism producing the exact opposite of its stated intent.

Edited by -Mr_Fess-

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We are going to disagree about the inequality here because I think the gov won't solve it taking from me or richie rich, which I am not btw. I think it always hurts the average joe and encourages the wealthy to take their business elsewhere and we need their money and their business to stay here. I think the poor never having to do anything but stay poor is never going to help the poor.

And I'm pretty sure obamacare has a capital gains tax hike in it. If I'm not mistaking, it's gone from 15%-35%. So for me, as a middle-class guy I am, or will be if the hike is true, fully discouraged to make any investments that can't pay out enormously. What I'm saying is that its not only rich guys who can make capital gains investments. I'm in construction for a living and I'd love nothing more than to find a house to flip and turn a big profit. But that extra 20% hike in taxes, plus all the labor and payroll taxes and other general costs of dong business really make the ROI so much less appealing. Hell, if anything, now that I'm thinking about it, raising capital gains tax ensures that almost only rich people can get in on that game because they're going to be the only ones who can afford to make the expensive investments that turn the gigantic profits. Small investments won't be worth it to them and will be unaffordable for middle of the road guys like myself. So I'll label that as yet another example of liberalism producing the exact opposite of its stated intent.

I get what you're saying. The reason this is a debatable topic is because both sides can be right. Raising taxes can discourage economic activity. The economic activity can also be profitable enough that a tax increase will have no effect but to increase revenues.

Here's my take on things:

We're in a hole. We're digging deeper every day. There's two things that will help - cutting spending and raising revenue. Here's the problem - People who want to cut spending refuse to even discuss cutting the massive expenses we accrue trying to maintain a military that's equal to the rest of the world combined even though it's the biggest chunk of money we throw away. People who want to raise revenue by increasing what super rich people pay refuse to discuss anything but personal income tax even though the super rich set their own salaries and essentially choose how much income tax to pay.

I believe capital gains should be treated like income taxes where there's a graduated scale from 0% for someone who dabbles to big% for someone who makes millions (with no deductions. I wish there were no deductions for income tax - or at least that they were capped).

As for Obamacare, I believe it's a horrible thing. It'll help some people in the short term but a lot of the problems with our health care system are just going to get worse because it doesn't actually fix problems. It just pumps more money into the bad system we have.

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People can argue all the want and it is not going to stop the fact that even taking every single dollar the Rich make in a year in taxes is not going to even come close to closing a Trillion Plus spending Deficit. Not without other measures being taken. And since we know that no one is going to actually do a 90% or 100% tax on the rich, and that probably the best that will happen is an end to the "Bush" tax cuts, we can say that the extra 50 to 100 billion collected, is also not going to do much to close the Deficit. Especially if legislators take the oportunnity to actually create more debit, such as raising the length for Unemployment Benefits yet again. Taxing the rich is only like 5% of what needs to be done.

Myself, I say do it, but do everything else that needs doing too. Don't just increase taxes and give mouth service to cuts.

Edit: Actually I checked and 100% of the money from the top 4% (Those making over 200,000 dollars per year) would actually be very close to a 1.2 trillion. So that actually might work. Gonig off old numbers, but anyone REALLY cares they should be able to calculate the numbers.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_income_in_the_United_States

Edited by DieChecker

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I know nothing of the sort.

Evidence, please, that the cost of living index is fraudulent.

I didn't say it was fraudulent. Wrong courtroom, looking for evidence of that. When I gave evidence of cost of living increases, you ignored it.

You know plenty of the sort when the government excludes the costs and admits. How do I need to provide evidence of that to you? This is all just rhetoric and arguing about nothing.

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I didn't say it was fraudulent. Wrong courtroom, looking for evidence of that.

If it's not fraudulent, then what is your issue, exactly? That the number the Fed uses isn't sufficiently accurate enough for them to do their job?

When I gave evidence of cost of living increases, you ignored it.

Possibly. I do tend to automatically filter out a lot of what you say at any given time - such as "Housing prices in California are up 19.3% in the past year alone", when the figure you're actually quoting is the rise in the Median house price sold in California, which is something completely different. As the LA Times story I've linked to goes on to state - "He noted that a big factor in the rising median price is increased sales of high-end homes, which skew the results to the upside. Indexes that track specific home resales, such as Case-Shiller, show far lower price appreciation."

So. Perhaps you'd like to re-present what you think you have that looks like evidence for your position and I'll take another look at it.

You know plenty of the sort when the government excludes the costs and admits. How do I need to provide evidence of that to you?

Unless you've become suddenly psychic, you have no idea what I know or otherwise - and there's a completely different forum for that.

As far as I'm aware, the Fed is currently using the most general CPI rate - which, as far as I'm concerned, is a decent representative number for inflation.

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Myself, I say do it, but do everything else that needs doing too. Don't just increase taxes and give mouth service to cuts.

I would agree, but go further and say raise everyone's taxes by a percentage or two.

Edit: Actually I checked and 100% of the money from the top 4% (Those making over 200,000 dollars per year) would actually be very close to a 1.2 trillion. So that actually might work. Gonig off old numbers, but anyone REALLY cares they should be able to calculate the numbers.

http://en.wikipedia....e_United_States

It comes to about 900 billion. However, that is total income.

You'd have to confiscate every cent they made, leaving them in utter poverty, not raise the taxes on their upper marginal rates.

Current proposed tax increases are marginal. Everything they make up to $200,000/yr would be taxed at the same rate as before. At your link, it's plain to see that many in the top 5% would experience no tax increase at all.

Obviously, no such tax increase will have any effect at all. If the Dems think tax increases are part of the solution, then they need to pony up what tax increases they think should be part of the solution. The fact that no effective plan is in the works for tax increases simply points to the fact that this is a political ploy. The question is, if the Repubs cave and go along, will we see any effective cuts made in spending, as promised?

I would guess no is the answer to that question.

Like I said, I think all taxes should be raised.

Harte

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It comes to about 900 billion. However, that is total income.

You'd have to confiscate every cent they made, leaving them in utter poverty, not raise the taxes on their upper marginal rates.

Your basic hard core Liberal is going to tell you that Joe Billionare is still going to have all his billions and probably should have much of that taken away too. But, they fail to realize that many people who would fall into that 200k+ income level are actually Living at that income level. They have expensive cars, expensive homes and such. And basically without selling stuff they would quickly not be able to pay their own bills. Of course, if Mr 200K was not able to pay his bills, Mr Liberal would not care, and simply call, "Oh, boo hoo.".

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If it's not fraudulent, then what is your issue, exactly? That the number the Fed uses isn't sufficiently accurate enough for them to do their job?

Possibly. I do tend to automatically filter out a lot of what you say at any given time - such as "Housing prices in California are up 19.3% in the past year alone", when the figure you're actually quoting is the rise in the Median house price sold in California, which is something completely different. As the LA Times story I've linked to goes on to state - "He noted that a big factor in the rising median price is increased sales of high-end homes, which skew the results to the upside. Indexes that track specific home resales, such as Case-Shiller, show far lower price appreciation."

So. Perhaps you'd like to re-present what you think you have that looks like evidence for your position and I'll take another look at it.

Unless you've become suddenly psychic, you have no idea what I know or otherwise - and there's a completely different forum for that.

As far as I'm aware, the Fed is currently using the most general CPI rate - which, as far as I'm concerned, is a decent representative number for inflation.

No it's not "completely different" than what I said and in fact it's NO different than what I said AT ALL. Nitpicking is sometimes useful, but not this time when it's for no reason at all. Means and medians are common ways of expressing percentage increases in prices, including housing prices in California the past year. I didn't say that it was AT LEAST 19.3%. I didn't say that only the most expensive homes were up 19.3%. I didn't say that the cheapest homes were up 19.3%. I said HOUSING was up 19.3% and that is a fact, medians or no medians.

Wrong, I do have an idea of what you know and think because I read what you post.

You think it's decent? What's decent about hiding the true costs that people have to pay in this country? It's deceptive as hell. It's a BS number that means nothing. It's a number that bureaucrats use like a whip to push their pathetic policies on us and you're defending it. Not impressed.

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The UK tried tax hikes on the rich and it produced LESS tax revenue. Maybe we should do the same and expect a different result.

All this class warfare is just a side show. I don't want to raise ANYONE'S taxes whether they're rich, poor, or somewhere in the middle. Because the act of raising taxes just pushes money out of the productive private sector and pulls it into the unproductive public sector. And we still wonder why we get less revenue when taxes go up.

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The UK tried tax hikes on the rich and it produced LESS tax revenue. Maybe we should do the same and expect a different result.

All this class warfare is just a side show. I don't want to raise ANYONE'S taxes whether they're rich, poor, or somewhere in the middle. Because the act of raising taxes just pushes money out of the productive private sector and pulls it into the unproductive public sector. And we still wonder why we get less revenue when taxes go up.

Because the British, to the contrary of the Americans, can just incorporate in Jersey (no taxes) and still be considered a domestic company.

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