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Apple Called To Senate To Explain Taxes  
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 2335 times:

Well, it looks like the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations has asked Apple CEO Tim Cook to explain Apple's tax situation.

It seems that Apple takes advantage of certain provisions (let's call them loopholes) in the tax code to reduce its tax burden.

Mind you, none of this is illegal, nor does it appear that anyone is saying Apple broke the law.

So why exactly has Apple been called on the carpet?

http://news.yahoo.com/apples-cook-fa...es-senate-questions-154822735.html

A little more detail here:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/conniegu...s-to-be-dramatically-simplified/2/

You gotta love Rand Paul.

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2013/05/...-twitter/?section=money_technology

About 6 1/2 minutes:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rjLhjxQTws


When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
104 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 2326 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
You gotta love Rand Paul.

On this one, Rand is right on the money.

I may disagree with the policies Apple and other businesses are taking advantage of, but they are the policies of the Government. However I do think that the Senate hearing is more of a drum beat for further issues regarding deregulation of tax policies .



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8283 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2320 times:

Apple posted Tim Cook's Opening Remarks at:

http://www.apple.com/pr/pdf/Apple_Testimony_to_PSI.pdf

The document presents an interesting picture of various aspects of Apple's internal operations. When you consider that 61% of Apple's sales are outside of the US it is understandable (to me, at least) why the company is very careful managing funds outside of the country. The ability to grow internationally with these funds (especially in areas like China) is something that shareholders should be very appreciative of.

As for the politicians, just another Dog & Pony Show. Unfortunately for the politicians there are other, more important factors going on in the world. Like the Oklahoma Tornadoes, which are far more deserving of our attention than a mass of politicians flapping their jaws.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 3, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2316 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):

Well, it looks like the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations has asked Apple CEO Tim Cook to explain Apple's tax situation.

It seems that Apple takes advantage of certain provisions (let's call them loopholes) in the tax code to reduce its tax burden.

Apple is getting picked on for being successful. If I were Mr. Cook I'd have told the senators to go screw themselves. Apple has nothing to gain and everything to lose from this farce.

If the government wants to do something, drop the taxes so that money can come into the country. But if they insist on tightening their grip, more money will slip away.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinemt99 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 6594 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2305 times:
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Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
If I were Mr. Cook I'd have told the senators to go screw themselves.

I agree.

I would have said: "We comply with all the rules. YOU (congress) makes up the rules. If YOU don't like the rules that are currently in the books, change them. When you do, we will comply with them. the ball is in YOUR court, not Apple's"



Step into my office, baby
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Reply 5, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2289 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 1):
On this one, Rand is right on the money.

I may not always agree with Mr. Paul...though I do seem to do so more than not...but, he is spot on through his whole statement.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 1):
However I do think that the Senate hearing is more of a drum beat for further issues regarding deregulation of tax policies

Let's hope so. We need a simpler, more efficient tax code. We need a tax code that that does what a tax code is supposed to do: raise money for the essential functions of government.

Quoting mt99 (Reply 4):
I would have said: "We comply with all the rules. YOU (congress) makes up the rules. If YOU don't like the rules that are currently in the books, change them. When you do, we will comply with them. the ball is in YOUR court, not Apple's"

Absolutely correct. As Mr. Paul said, tax policy is the province of the Congress.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2272 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
It seems that Apple takes advantage of certain provisions (let's call them loopholes) in the tax code to reduce its tax burden.

Mind you, none of this is illegal, nor does it appear that anyone is saying Apple broke the law.

So why exactly has Apple been called on the carpet?

I'd call them on the carpet in order to shine some light on how these loopholes work so that the public can see what sort of machinations go on behind the scenes with the tax policy. All that stuff is pretty obscure, and a high profile case like this makes it less so.

Quoting mt99 (Reply 4):
I would have said: "We comply with all the rules. YOU (congress) makes up the rules. If YOU don't like the rules that are currently in the books, change them. When you do, we will comply with them. the ball is in YOUR court, not Apple's"

Absolutely correct. But in order to change them, there's going to have to be public support, and it's difficult to drum up that public support when the only ones who really know how the loopholes work are the big companies and their accountancy firms.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 7, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2262 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 1):
On this one, Rand is right on the money.

Are we agreeing on something? No way!

Quoting casinterest (Reply 1):
I may disagree with the policies Apple and other businesses are taking advantage of, but they are the policies of the Government.

Knew it was too good to be true...

These are profits from overseas operations. Not US sales. There is no "loophole at work here, this is very basic Tax Territoriality. A state taxes economic activity that takes place within its borders. The US taxes Honda on cars it sells here. France will tax Apple's business activities in France.

The main problem here is that the US government has developed a level of greed unmatched in any country that I can think of. Not only does it want to tax activity within the US, but it also wants to tax activity outside the US. US citizens living and working overseas continue to have to pay taxes, even though they are already taxed locally. And they want to tax US-owned companies the same way. Fortunately there exists a provision that essentially differs any such taxes as long as the money is not repatriated.

What a dumb idea.

Repatriated cash from overseas business is basically free money to the US economy. Remember, the earnings had nothing to do with the US. Apple (France) SARL bought Ipods from China and sold them in France. and made a lot of profits (after having paid full taxes in France). 1) The US government did nothing to earn its share, and 2) bringing that money home means it can be distributed to shareholders and employees, who will spend more, or can be used to fund new businesses, etc.

Allowing that money and all other foreign earnings tax-free back into the US brings nothing but good to the US. But some politicians simply can't allow a that to happen. They have to demand their cut. So the money stays outside the country, benefiting nobody but Irish money managers, and eventually the shareholders of a foreign company, because the only thing Apple can possibly do with so much money is to buy something with it - and that company will have to be outside the US.

Considering the amount of money they've accumulated, perhaps they will soon buy a little place for Apple employees to retire to. Australia, perhaps  

Rand Paul has it exactly right. The Senate should be begging Apple to bring that money home, tax free.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 8, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2262 times:

Quoting mt99 (Reply 4):
When you do, we will comply with them.

More like "When you do, we will find new ways around it, outsource more, and keep more money elsewhere."

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 5):
We need a simpler, more efficient tax code. We need a tax code that that does what a tax code is supposed to do: raise money for the essential functions of government.

Switch to FairTax. No corporate taxes so there are no accounting games, no reason to keep money away from America, and very little for large companies to lobby for.

Quoting Mir (Reply 6):
I'd call them on the carpet in order to shine some light on how these loopholes work so that the public can see what sort of machinations go on behind the scenes with the tax policy.

You want them to show up and lay their cards on the table? I'd reply to that request with a reply that would make Rahmbo blush.

Quoting Mir (Reply 6):
But in order to change them, there's going to have to be public support,

...in other words, vilify American companies and convince people that they are being screwed even if they aren't.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 9, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2254 times:

Quoting mt99 (Reply 4):
I would have said: "We comply with all the rules. YOU (congress) makes up the rules. If YOU don't like the rules that are currently in the books, change them. When you do, we will comply with them. the ball is in YOUR court, not Apple's"

And in the mean time they will make sure their lobbyists undermine any effort to change the rules, and if rule changes come along, they still have huge loopholes in them.

Apple is being called out because they happen to be the world's biggest corporation and have used the loopholes to great effect.

The main way it works is simple:

Quote:

The schemes used by all three companies work by arranging for the units that make sales to customers in Europe and elsewhere to make tax-deductible payments to untaxed, or little taxed, affiliates for the use of intellectual property such as brands and business processes.

So, they avoid tax at the point of sale because they make these tax-deductible payments to the shell corporations, and then they avoid tax for the shell corporation by parking it in a low-tax locale (Bermuda, Luxemburg, etc).

The problem for them is that the billions end up parked in Bermuda etc and can't be repatriated without paying a huge tax at that point, so there's no free lunch, yet we read:

Quote:

The subcommittee report also noted that Apple has been setting aside billions for tax bills it may never pay. As previously reported by The Associated Press, the overlooked asset that Apple has been building up could boost Apple's profits by as much as $10.5 billion. However, Apple has been lobbying to change U.S. law so it can erase its tax liabilities in a less conspicuous fashion.

Apple needs to tap some of the $102B it has oversees (of its total $145B hoard) to pay the $100B in dividends it's promised to its stockholders, yet repatriating it will cause it to be taxed. They have been putting aside money to pay that tax (i.e. $10.5B) knowing that if they want to use the money they'd have to pay the tax, but as we read, they have sent in the lobbyists. If successful, they can keep a large chunk of that $10.5B. Perfectly natural, but too bad for us non-corporate tax payers who can't throw millions at lobbyists because we'll get back billions.

Ref: http://news.yahoo.com/panel-apple-us...side-us-avoid-taxes-210041569.html



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Reply 10, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2244 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 6):
I'd call them on the carpet in order to shine some light on how these loopholes work so that the public can see what sort of machinations go on behind the scenes with the tax policy. All that stuff is pretty obscure, and a high profile case like this makes it less so.

And why is it so obscure? Why do corporations go through such machinations? Why does the public not know about them? Because the tax code is cumbersome. Because the tax code is complex. Because the tax code is ridiculous.

But, again, I ask, why are we asking a company, in a public hearing, about their tax strategy? They have broken no law. They are complying with the law. There is only one real reason to bring Apple or any other company using these provisions of the tax code, to the hearing: that is to castigate them for finding a legal way to not pay money to the US Treasury.

If Mr. McCain and Mr. Levin wanted to bring this stuff to light, they should be grilling the IRS...oh wait...they're busy in another room.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7915 posts, RR: 52
Reply 11, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 2234 times:

I have a strange feeling that if this corporation wasn't "Apple" a lot of people would be calling this company a corrupt, shady organization. Can't prove it, but I just have a feeling... (hey, it made a bunch of liberals agree with Rand Paul, you know something weird is up   )


Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 2205 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
Knew it was too good to be true...

These are profits from overseas operations.

Well yes and no. It depends on particulars. and the devil is in the details. Sure If they sold Iphones in Ireland, they should keep the money in Ireland Right?

But what about the designers in the US that designed the software?
What about the testers in other countries that tested the code? They get paid right?

What about the Manufacturer in China? They get paid.

The funds are moved where needed to cover costs.


You are way to quick to just dismiss my simple point. My point is that there are multiple government policies that make it more efficient to keep "profits" overseas. However the "cost of business" is easily repatriated due to taxes. and other concerns.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 13, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 2193 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 8):
...in other words, vilify American companies and convince people that they are being screwed even if they aren't.

It's not vilifying American companies - Apple's doing nothing wrong. It's vilifying the people who put the tax code together (i.e. Congress and their various lobbyists).

And the ones who are really being screwed are the other businesses that can't afford the level of international expansion that would let them use the same loopholes that Apple does. It strikes me that the playing field isn't entirely level.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 10):
And why is it so obscure? Why do corporations go through such machinations? Why does the public not know about them? Because the tax code is cumbersome. Because the tax code is complex. Because the tax code is ridiculous.

The tax code is all of those things, and it needs to be simplified. But it also needs to be simplified in the right way, and one can't do that if the people can't act as a check on the lobbyists.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8283 posts, RR: 8
Reply 14, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days ago) and read 2186 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
If the government wants to do something, drop the taxes so that money can come into the country.

When you look at all of the loopholes you find that corporate taxes are not that high. Look at how hard the GOP in the Senate fought to protect that $40 Billion cash handout to the oil companies. You think the oil companies would let that cash handout go for "lower rates"? Not a chance.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 5):
We need a simpler, more efficient tax code.

My brother-in-law is a tax lawyer and LOVES it when the tax code is "simplified". His income always goes up.

As soon as the effort to "simplify" the tax code all of the lobbyists come out of the woodwork. But you know that, don't you?

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 5):
We need a tax code that that does what a tax code is supposed to do: raise money for the essential functions of government.

We have that. It is well financed by political contributions (which is why it is around 72,000 pages long) and any changes will only be with the approval of the wealthy (individual & business) in the country.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
The main problem here is that the US government has developed a level of greed unmatched in any country that I can think of

Not really. Take a look at ll the loopholes available and the games allowed and it's not that bad. Old Romney could pull in over $20 Million and only pay 13% - not that bad.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
Remember, the earnings had nothing to do with the US. Apple (France) SARL bought Ipods from China and sold them in France. and made a lot of profits (after having paid full taxes in France)

Actually sales in inter nation markets do have something with Apple in the US - Apple's rights to intellectual property is retained in the US, and other assets, such as advertising design, are also retained.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
1) The US government did nothing to earn its share

It provides the business environment that allows businesses to function. For that it becomes a (generally) silent partner.

When I had my little one man company I had a few silent partners. The IRS, SOcial Security Administration, Medicare, the Oklahoma Tax Office, etc.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
But some politicians simply can't allow a that to happen

Politicians will do what they are told to do by the lobbyists. Any politician with a moral backbone these days will be kicked out in the next primary election.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 8):
"When you do, we will find new ways around it, outsource more, and keep more money elsewhere."

If you read Apple's release you'll see that they are paying about 2.5% of the total business taxes paid into the US Treasury for income taxes. ($1 Billion for each $40 Billion paid into the Treasury.) Then add in all of the other US based taxes, from FICA to state income taxes and all of the various local taxes.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 8):
Switch to FairTax.

Geez, that is just what we need to kill permanently off the middle class.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 8):
No corporate taxes so there are no accounting games, no reason to keep money away from America, and very little for large companies to lobby for.

Doubt if companies would go for that as it would (1) kill of the tax credits (cash handouts) they receive, (2) increase taxes for most Americans, thus reducing their ability to sell their products in the US and (3) motivate other countries ti increase their taxes on US companies as they know the cash would be available.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
US citizens living and working overseas continue to have to pay taxes, even though they are already taxed locally.

That's a no-braianer. When we lived in Australia our tax calculation was US Tax less Aussie Tax. As the Aussie Tax was more than the US Tax our US Taxes due was z-e-r-o.  
Quoting Revelation (Reply 9):
they avoid tax at the point of sale

Actually they don't avoid POS related taxes, be it Sale Taxes, GST, VAT or what ever a local government tax is.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 10):
Because the tax code is cumbersome. Because the tax code is complex. Because the tax code is ridiculous.

The tax code is exactly what politicians were paid to put in place. The term is "political contributions" and the USSC has really opened the door for huge payments - making it clearer that politicians will be even more responsive to big money. Reality is that you get what they paid for.


User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 15, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days ago) and read 2182 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 12):
Well yes and no. It depends on particulars. and the devil is in the details. Sure If they sold Iphones in Ireland, they should keep the money in Ireland Right?

But what about the designers in the US that designed the software?
What about the testers in other countries that tested the code? They get paid right?

What about the Manufacturer in China? They get paid.

The funds are moved where needed to cover costs.

That's all taken care of through the rules governing intercompany sales and transfers. That's all been taxed properly. We are talking about what's left over.


Quoting casinterest (Reply 12):
You are way to quick to just dismiss my simple point. My point is that there are multiple government policies that make it more efficient to keep "profits" overseas.

And I don't disagree with that, and add that the second point is that since repatriation of overseas profits is a pure net profit to the US economy, the government should stop being so greedy and allow all companies to bring in those funds, tax free. The benefit to the economy would be tremendous.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlineWestJet747 From Canada, joined Aug 2011, 1834 posts, RR: 10
Reply 16, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days ago) and read 2180 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
So why exactly has Apple been called on the carpet?

Dog and pony show. Nuff said.

This all reminds me of when the British government pulled in executives from Starbucks (Google and Amazon were also dragged in) to explain why they didn't record any profits in England, yet they were apparently making billions in the Netherlands, a much smaller market. It's pretty much the same deal: because the bloody tax code lets them! They tried grilling the execs to make an example of them, but all the MPs did was expose their own foolishness and lack of understanding of their own damn laws.

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):
You gotta love Rand Paul.

Damn right. Although his tweets don't directly address the real issue of the government's ineffectiveness, he really just sounds like a cheerleader (albeit for the right team).

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
If I were Mr. Cook I'd have told the senators to go screw themselves.

I wouldn't have been so kind...

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
The main problem here is that the US government has developed a level of greed unmatched in any country that I can think of. Not only does it want to tax activity within the US, but it also wants to tax activity outside the US.

        

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 11):
I have a strange feeling that if this corporation wasn't "Apple" a lot of people would be calling this company a corrupt, shady organization. Can't prove it, but I just have a feeling...

Of course you can prove it. Look at what happened with GE last year. Pretty much the exact same underlying cause, yet they were dragged across the coals by public opinion. I can't even tell you how many arguments I had at the time with people who believed it was GE's fault...

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
Apple's rights to intellectual property is retained in the US, and other assets, such as advertising design, are also retained.

Except that it's basically impossible to value intellectual property. If you can't put a number to something, then you can't attribute earnings to it as far as taxes go.



Flying refined.
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 17, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days ago) and read 2174 times:

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
Actually sales in inter nation markets do have something with Apple in the US - Apple's rights to intellectual property is retained in the US, and other assets, such as advertising design, are also retained.

No. Apple (France) pays license fees to the parent company, royalties, pays a fair market price for goods and supplies it has to buy from the parent or other related companies.

Apple (US) will pay taxes on those royalty and license fees.


Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
It provides the business environment that allows businesses to function. For that it becomes a (generally) silent partner.

The French government, not the US. Because of that, Apple France pays French taxes.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 18, posted (1 year 4 months 5 days ago) and read 2166 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 12):
Well yes and no. It depends on particulars. and the devil is in the details. Sure If they sold Iphones in Ireland, they should keep the money in Ireland Right?

Indeed, but that's not what is happening here.

Quote:

Apple uses five companies located in Ireland to carry out its tax strategy, according to the report. The companies are located at the same address in Cork, Ireland, and they share members of their boards of directors. While all five companies were incorporated in Ireland, only two of them also have tax residency in that country. That means the other three aren't legally required to pay taxes in Ireland because they aren't managed or controlled in that country, in Apple's view.

The report says Apple capitalizes on a difference between U.S. and Irish rules regarding tax residency. In Ireland, a company must be managed and controlled in the country to be a tax resident. Under U.S. law, a company is a tax resident of the country in which it was established. Therefore, the Apple companies aren't tax residents of Ireland nor of the U.S., since they weren't incorporated in the U.S., in Apple's view.

The subcommittee said Apple's strategy of not declaring tax residency in any country could be unique among corporations.

"Apple wasn't satisfied with shifting its profits to a low-tax offshore tax haven," said Levin. "Apple sought the Holy Grail of tax avoidance. It has created offshore entities holding tens of billions of dollars, while claiming to be tax resident nowhere."

Ireland is chosen because it has that legal quirk that says if you manage the company from outside Ireland (i.e. from the US) then the company is not a tax resident of Ireland. Apple has funneled billions of dollars from all kinds of different things through these Irish shell corporations.

Quote:

Irish subsidiary that earned $22 billion in 2011 paid only $10 million in taxes

Note that the Irish did not consume $22B of Apple products in 2011.

Ref: http://news.yahoo.com/panel-apple-us...side-us-avoid-taxes-210041569.html



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2142 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
Rand Paul has it exactly right. The Senate should be begging Apple to bring that money home, tax free.

  

There shouldn't even be corporate taxes in the first place.

If you want to tax rich _people_, tax rich people. But taxing and penalizing corporate activity is anti-economy and anti-public. The government, of course, is free to be anti-public -- to the extent that they can somehow lead the sheeple on, and strip them bare, and tell them how helpless they would be without powerful father figure lords who wisely command them to and fro.


User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2116 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 18):
Note that the Irish did not consume $22B of Apple products in 2011.

And this is the crux of my point. Apple is taking advantage of laws that exist to hide profits.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 19):
There shouldn't even be corporate taxes in the first place.

Why not? Corporations use and require the same facilities that people do. Corporations can deduct their expenses, but if they are turning a profit, they should be subject to taxes, just as anyone who invests and gets a return does.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 21, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2110 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 20):
Apple is taking advantage of laws that exist to hide profits.

...from those who have no business taking any of it.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Reply 22, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2107 times:

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
My brother-in-law is a tax lawyer and LOVES it when the tax code is "simplified". His income always goes up.

I'm guessing his income hasn't gone up in a long time. Because, the tax code hasn't been actually simplified in years.

Quoting WestJet747 (Reply 16):
Damn right. Although his tweets don't directly address the real issue of the government's ineffectiveness, he really just sounds like a cheerleader (albeit for the right team).

The "tweet" platform really doesn't allow for a whole lot of elaboration. In fact, the tweet platform is perfect for cheerleading. He's looking to get the younger crowd, and, unfortunately too many of them have the attention span of a "tweet".

You have to listen and read him to get the full scope of his tweets. Being one of my senators, I do see and hear a bit more of him than the average American.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineaaron747 From Japan, joined Aug 2003, 8153 posts, RR: 26
Reply 23, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2104 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
If I were Mr. Cook I'd have told the senators to go screw themselves.

Tim Cook has bigger fish to fry. If anything, he turned it around on them on the sly by getting them to admit their policies were inconsistent to close the hearing.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
The main problem here is that the US government has developed a level of greed unmatched in any country that I can think of. Not only does it want to tax activity within the US, but it also wants to tax activity outside the US. US citizens living and working overseas continue to have to pay taxes, even though they are already taxed locally. And they want to tax US-owned companies the same way. Fortunately there exists a provision that essentially differs any such taxes as long as the money is not repatriated.

  

It's ridiculous. These people wouldn't know common sense if it slapped them with an open palm.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 11):

I have a strange feeling that if this corporation wasn't "Apple" a lot of people would be calling this company a corrupt, shady organization.

Actually Cook used the hearing to take a swipe at other types of businesses that have been called before the Hill. And his point is valid. Apple is a real company, making real products, with real R&D costs, sold around the world. As opposed to other businesses that simply come up with more and more complex "products" for trading/manipulating monetary figures from one to the other.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
It is well financed by political contributions (which is why it is around 72,000 pages long) and any changes will only be with the approval of the wealthy (individual & business) in the country.

Tim Cook's total compensation was nearly $400 million in 2011 



If you need someone to blame / throw a rock in the air / you'll hit someone guilty
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 2095 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 21):

...from those who have no business taking any of it.

Of the people, by the people, for the people. It's government. Not business. There is a big difference.

As I said before, the Government's laws allow this money to be legally out there. I just think that policies need to change about that money.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 25, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 2129 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 20):
Why not? Corporations use and require the same facilities that people do. Corporations can deduct their expenses, but if they are turning a profit, they should be subject to taxes, just as anyone who invests and gets a return does.

Corporations do not use facilities. People do. Corporations are nothing but real people doing business. Working, owning or being customers. If shareholders want to pay to widen some roads, let them pay. If you want to tax them, tax them.

Taxing a corporation is no different from taxing a nonprofit. Or taxing the government of Louisiana. You're just adding a cost there because you can get away with it.

I don't question why govt wants to tax corporations. Govt is filled with bureaucrats and lackeys who become wealthy by taxing people and reallocating billions, or even trillions of dollars. I am only pointing out how unfair corporate tax is, at the international level (Apple pays lower taxes than your local hardware store). And how morally speaking, taxing corporations, but not prisons, or public schools, or other human activities does not necessarily make automatic sense.

If people make iPhones, and pay investors, employees, delighting customers, I am not sure why you should tax that umbrella of activity (keeping in mind, investors will be taxed AGAIN on their personal receipt of those profits).


User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8283 posts, RR: 8
Reply 26, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 2108 times:

Quoting Flighty (Reply 19):
There shouldn't even be corporate taxes in the first place.

Why not? Corporations re the first to take advantage of the infrastructure developed by governments. They also are first in line when a potential government contract comes up.

And, of course, you need to pave taxes to pay before you can have your tax credits - like the $400 Billion credit for the oil industry.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 20):
Apple is taking advantage of laws that exist to hide profits.

Apple has some very talented tax people, but they still pay some of the biggest tax bills in the country - if not the biggest. While they may maximize their tax benefits they are still paying a healthy percentage at 30%.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 22):
I'm guessing his income hasn't gone up in a long time.

He's doing OK.  
Quoting aaron747 (Reply 23):
Tim Cook's total compensation was nearly $400 million in 2011 

How much of that was in shares?


User currently offlineaaron747 From Japan, joined Aug 2003, 8153 posts, RR: 26
Reply 27, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 2095 times:

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 26):
How much of that was in shares?

The vast majority:

http://www.businessinsider.com/tim-c...ion-for-2011-is-400-million-2012-1

Apple's executive salaries are pretty modest considering what their balance sheets look like. Their financial management is top-notch.



If you need someone to blame / throw a rock in the air / you'll hit someone guilty
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8283 posts, RR: 8
Reply 28, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 2049 times:

Quoting aaron747 (Reply 27):
Apple's executive salaries are pretty modest considering what their balance sheets look like.

The big chunk of his shares are designed to keep him with the company through 2021. That approach is an effective one for Apple as it makes it difficult for other companies to take execs away. It is also why JCP paid out over $50 million to take Johnson away from Apple - they had to cover all share rights.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 29, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 2041 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 13):
It's not vilifying American companies - Apple's doing nothing wrong. It's vilifying the people who put the tax code together (i.e. Congress and their various lobbyists).

The end result is that some politicians are going to have to convince the American people that Apple and other large companies are holding onto their money. Never mind that it isn't really theirs...

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
You think the oil companies would let that cash handout go for "lower rates"? Not a chance.

I wouldn't either. Somehow those lower rates in return for giving up loopholes might not materialize, especially given how much some people want more revenue for the government.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
It provides the business environment that allows businesses to function. For that it becomes a (generally) silent partner.

That's the ass backwards way to look at it. The government isn't a partner, the government just provides a service. Less of a shareholder and more of the guy who delivers the water jugs.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
Geez, that is just what we need to kill permanently off the middle class.

You obviously do not understand the FairTax scheme. It could, in theory, become regressive but in practice would almost certainly not be.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
(1) kill of the tax credits (cash handouts) they receive,

Why do you need tax credits when there's no tax to pay in the first place?

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 14):
(2) increase taxes for most Americans, thus reducing their ability to sell their products in the US

Companies could also see an increase in profits or lower the cost of their products since they'd be left without tax burdens. Of course, all corporate taxes are ultimately paid by the public anyway.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 20):
Apple is taking advantage of laws that exist to hide profits.

They aren't hiding them. They're just putting them where the government can't skim it.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineQFA380 From Australia, joined Jul 2005, 2077 posts, RR: 1
Reply 30, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 1983 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
You obviously do not understand the FairTax scheme. It could, in theory, become regressive but in practice would almost certainly not be.

It almost certainly would be regressive. It is much easier to avoid consumption taxes than it is to avoid income taxes. Large consumption taxes promote the growth in the black market, if the opportunity cost of avoiding it may be only 20% in lower quality, risk of getting caught etc but the tax is 23% why would anyone legitimately purchase it?

There are a myriad of ways to avoid consumption taxes that are more difficult to detect than income tax avoidance. What is to stop a young couple recently engaged from purchasing rings in Hong Kong, say $50000 all up. $10000 is airfares but the FairTax is 23% in the US. The young couple is essentially getting a free holiday, there is no way the government can prove that they bought the rings in Hong Kong.

Here in Australia we don't pay GST on imports less than a $1000. If I buy a $1800 camera from Hong Kong, I can ask the seller to place it in two boxes, lens, battery etc in one and body in another and mark each as $900. That is $180 in tax I just avoided perfectly legally that I would've paid if I bought from a shop here.

The higher the consumption tax is the less people will be willing to pay it and funnily enough it will be the rich who are making big purchases who are most able to avoid the tax (in the aforementioned example, its not worth it for a couple spending $10000 on rings to travel to buy them).

Then there is the 'cash economy', nothing is stopping you or your builder from exchanging at a lower price is it is cash,

Economists (and amateurs such as myself) all agree that consumption taxes offer the lowest deadweight loss however they are the easiest to avoid, pragmatically one large consumption tax is an horrific idea. The economists that I've been taught by unanimously agree that a consumption tax is regressive.

My opinion on an optimal tax, highly progressive income tax with no corporate tax and a small consumption tax (10% works reasonably well for us). Boom for small business, naturally big businesses such as Apple would never want company tax abolished because compliance helps keep the little guys down who can't afford to utilise the loopholes, exemptions, depreciation and offshoring.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 31, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1981 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):
What is to stop a young couple recently engaged from purchasing rings in Hong Kong, say $50000 all up.

Besides the fact that they cost $50k? (Seriously, no girl is worth that. Buy the $10k ring and a slightly used Corvette) There is customs. I'm not saying that there would have to be no enforcement, but even if it can sometimes be avoided it's much easier to collect also.

Of course, some level of tax evasion is good I think. On a basic level, that is an effective feedback mechanism to keep taxes low. It would be awful if the government were always rewarded for raising taxes. Having money slip through, making the government go to great efforts to actually collect the additional taxes and competition among tax jurisdictions, is good reason to keep it lower.

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):
Then there is the 'cash economy', nothing is stopping you or your builder from exchanging at a lower price is it is cash,

The cash economy can be just as easily accessed by the poor. Plenty of hustlers can work under the radar. FairTax provides fair opportunity for everyone to try and game the system.

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):
My opinion on an optimal tax, highly progressive income tax with no corporate tax and a small consumption tax (10% works reasonably well for us).

If you're going to have an income tax, there should be no consumption tax except for specific funds such as a gas tax to maintain roads. (And no, that doesn't include sin taxes just because the government doesn't like something)



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineQFA380 From Australia, joined Jul 2005, 2077 posts, RR: 1
Reply 32, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1961 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
Seriously, no girl is worth that.

I wholeheartedly agree however plenty of people disagree and it stands as a simple example of how easy it would be to avoid your consumption tax.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
FairTax provides fair opportunity for everyone to try and game the system.

That seems to have worked well for everyone in Greece. If people see others getting away with cheating, they'll do the same. How is creating a system from the outset that you know will be gamed a good idea?

The UK has an estimated VAT gap of around 10%, that is on a lower rate in a less tax hostile country. I'd imagine in the US it would be substantially higher.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
There is customs.

Would you trust customs/TSA with a record of everything you've ever purchased to prove you paid tax? I'm sure you'd enjoy paying an extra 13% on souvenirs at the border for your relatives if you had just visited Australia.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
On a basic level, that is an effective feedback mechanism to keep taxes low.

Along the same lines, more murders are an effective feedback mechanism that the death penalty is too severe.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 33, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1952 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 32):
How is creating a system from the outset that you know will be gamed a good idea?

Keeping tax increases from being free money is a good thing. Capitalism always wins, so it's preferable to have a system where it wins by TKO rather than having a full out slug fest with liberals trying to take their cut.

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 32):
Would you trust customs/TSA with a record of everything you've ever purchased to prove you paid tax?

Not at all, which is why I'd strongly favor a loose customs system that allows for tax competition. Connecting higher taxes to a loss of domestic business and tax revenue is a good reason to keep taxes low. Businesses will hate higher taxes if it will drive their customers offshore.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 34, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1953 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):
Economists (and amateurs such as myself) all agree that consumption taxes offer the lowest deadweight loss however they are the easiest to avoid, pragmatically one large consumption tax is an horrific idea. The economists that I've been taught by unanimously agree that a consumption tax is regressive.

It all depends of the level of taxation. People will certainly bend over backwards to evade a 20% tax, but not so much for a 5% or 10% tax.

It is the same with income tax. 20%, people will be generally OK with it. 40%, 50%, you start getting tax evasion problems.

If companies such as Apple (and they are certainly not alone) are working so hard to avoid a huge tax bill, that is a big waving flag that we are trying to tax them too much.

Lower taxation = greater compliance, more consistent revenue.

Higher taxation = evasion, greater enforcement problems, inconsistent revenue (based on when/where you catch people - ask the Italians)

Most successful countries use a blend of taxation - VAT and Income tax, and try to keep both at a level acceptable enough to avoid compliance problems.

In any case, IMHO repatriation of foreign profits should never, ever be taxed, except maybe at a token level (like 5%). It's free money for the economy.

As for consumption taxes being regressive, that is a term used by propagandists, and unfortunately has found its way into common speech. Much like the term "Progressive", which gives the idea of progress, advancement, improvement. Who doesn't want those things? The propaganda value of language has been a hallmark of statists and progressives for over a century - but I digress...

The fact of the matter is that in the US:
- you have nearly 50% of the population that pays virtually no taxes (I'm talking about the general fund, not SSA, FICA etc),
- Corporate tax revenue is highly volatile. In a recession, companies make losses and there is nothing to tax. In boom years things look rosier than they really are (exactly what happened during the dot.com boom in the late 90s)
- You have the top 10% of the population paying over 70% of all taxes. The top 1% pay 37% of all taxes. Quite apart from their attempts at evading taxes, people need to realize that this income base is, like Corporate tax revenue, highly volatile. as the huge incomes of this top 1% go up and down drastically. Illustration: The 37% I quoted was in 2009 - a bad year with income tax revenue already down across the board. Two years earlier they paid 41% of a much higher overall base.

A flat consumption tax, which I agree hits the poor rather more than others, combined with a graduated income tax, is really the fairest solution of all. Personally for the US, I think a 10% national VAT plus a graduated income tax (maximum rate of 20-25%, with very limited deductions) would be fair. EVERYONE would pay their fair share.

And yes, even the poor need to pay a little something to the Fed. The VAT would take care of that.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlineoffloaded From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2009, 886 posts, RR: 0
Reply 35, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 1924 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):

  

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
It all depends of the level of taxation. People will certainly bend over backwards to evade a 20% tax, but not so much for a 5% or 10% tax.

It is the same with income tax. 20%, people will be generally OK with it. 40%, 50%, you start getting tax evasion problems.

And this logic is utterly lost here in Portugal. Our VAT rate is 23% for starters. The government doesn't get it, literally. The higher taxes go, the less money they are getting as more people leave the system. Then tax revenues go down, so they put taxes up again. I'm sure all of this latest bailout deal and how much money they were going to get looked great when submitted to Ms. Merkel, but the reality is that things aren't working out like that at all, and now a second bailout is being discussed.

Governments want too many slices of the pie. If Ireland has very low corporation tax and it is legal to do what they do, then good for Apple. Ditto Google, Starbucks etc. Part of the problem is that half our politicians are career politicians, or people doing seamless transactions from union officials to MPs etc. Where are the entrepreneurs, the risk takers, business leaders and wealth creators?



To no one will we sell, or deny, or delay, right or justice - Magna Carta, 1215
User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 27007 posts, RR: 57
Reply 36, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 1920 times:

Quoting offloaded (Reply 35):
If Ireland has very low corporation tax and it is legal to do what they do, then good for Apple.

Ireland seems to be getting hit by these scandals. They have to answer to the EU at a summit today . I'm sure the pressure will be on Ireland to increase these tax rates. The EU has been trying to get Ireland to do this for years. So far successive Irish governments have resisted but I cant see them lasting for long until they have to give in.


User currently offlineJJJ From Spain, joined May 2006, 1840 posts, RR: 1
Reply 37, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 1895 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
These are profits from overseas operations. Not US sales. There is no "loophole at work here, this is very basic Tax Territoriality. A state taxes economic activity that takes place within its borders. The US taxes Honda on cars it sells here. France will tax Apple's business activities in France.

If it only were that easy.

Apple does the bulk of their European operations through Ireland and even the Apple store network in each country post minimal profits as the bulk are shifted to Ireland.

Apple in France actually posted a loss in 2012, despite record sales.

It's a longish read, but it's explained here:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/...tax-loophole-idUSBRE94L00S20130522


User currently offlineoffloaded From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2009, 886 posts, RR: 0
Reply 38, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 1886 times:

That's one of the problems I have with the wonderous EU. It's always lowest common denominator, or in the case of taxes, highest common denominator.

If Ireland is forced to raise tax that will likely lead to less revenue.

Eventually the whole of Europe will be so uncompetitive, or as my Irish clients say to me: "Will that be cash or VAT?"



To no one will we sell, or deny, or delay, right or justice - Magna Carta, 1215
User currently offlineQFA380 From Australia, joined Jul 2005, 2077 posts, RR: 1
Reply 39, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 1884 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
It all depends of the level of taxation. People will certainly bend over backwards to evade a 20% tax, but not so much for a 5% or 10% tax.

I agree, and wrote as much.

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):
small consumption tax (10% works reasonably well for us)
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 33):
Keeping tax increases from being free money is a good thing. Capitalism always wins, so it's preferable to have a system where it wins by TKO rather than having a full out slug fest with liberals trying to take their cut.

You're destroying your own argument. You're saying 'this model of taxation is better than the current model (FairTax)' while simultaneously saying that a necessarily high one to pay for all government expenditure will force tax competition, which the US will lose.

Ireland wins in corporate taxes because they're lower, I'd bet plenty of money however that Irish people travel to the US to make purchases though because they have a VAT of 23%.

You can't just eliminate every single tax stream unless you want no government, which is completely different argument.


User currently offlineBoeing717200 From United States of America, joined Jan 2013, 856 posts, RR: 0
Reply 40, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 1852 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Thread starter):

The called Apple on the carpet to shame them. That's the MO lately. You are rich. You suck. You should be shamed in public.

Pathetic the government thinks its appropriate to do this. Maybe it's time for the government to downsize because its clearly too big for its britches.

[Edited 2013-05-22 05:55:57]

User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 41, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 1846 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 7):
Fortunately there exists a provision that essentially differs any such taxes as long as the money is not repatriated.

And indeed that's the downfall of the 'double Irish': you avoid a lot of taxes, but your money ends up in an offshore corporation where it's not particularly useful to you. That's how you end up with Apple saying they have $142B in the bank but when they try to use it to pay $100B of dividends they start to whine about taxes upon repatriation.

Quoting offloaded (Reply 35):
Governments want too many slices of the pie. If Ireland has very low corporation tax and it is legal to do what they do, then good for Apple. Ditto Google, Starbucks etc.

Ireland's problem is that they (a) aren't really getting much from this and (b) they are vulnerable to the loophole being closed and/or retaliatory measures.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 36):
I'm sure the pressure will be on Ireland to increase these tax rates

The low tax rate is only aspect of the Apple gimmick (yes, Mr. Cook, this is a gimmick!), the unique one is Irish law allowing a corporation registered in Ireland but managed from outside Ireland to pay no Irish tax. Combine that with the US law that states a corporation is taxed based on its place of registration, you end up with a corporation that resides in Ireland and is directed from the US that pays no taxes to either.

Three of the five Apple corporations registered in Ireland are set up this way. The other two seem to be set up along the traditional "double Irish" lines.

Bottom line is all Ireland gets out of this is an office building or two filled with a few dozen managers, accountants, lawyers and secretaries, and a pittance of tax, and now a lot of pissed off trading partners.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 42, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 1825 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
- You have the top 10% of the population paying over 70% of all taxes. The top 1% pay 37% of all taxes.

Since the top 10% holds 77% of the net worth in the country, and the top 1% holds 35% of it (those are 2010 numbers), that doesn't strike me as so out of line.

Quoting Boeing717200 (Reply 40):
The called Apple on the carpet to shame them. That's the MO lately. You are rich. You suck. You should be shamed in public.

The fact that they're rich has nothing to do with it. The government is broke and it keeps having to cut stuff that people legitimately need, and one of the reasons (though not the only reason) it has to do that is that there isn't enough revenue coming in, and one of the reasons there isn't enough revenue coming in is because certain people and/or companies use accounting tricks and offshoring to get out of paying tax.

It's not illegal, but it is the moral equivalent of farting in an elevator (which isn't illegal either). And since we have no problem shaming people who do one of those things, I don't see why we should have any problem shaming people who do the other.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 43, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1800 times:

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 26):
Corporations re the first to take advantage of the infrastructure developed by governments.

Really? Who's to say nonprofits, churches or schools aren't the first?

Quoting Mir (Reply 42):
The government is broke and it keeps having to cut stuff that people legitimately need, and one of the reasons (though not the only reason) it has to do that is that there isn't enough revenue coming in

The government has never been richer or more powerful. If they can't make do on 7 trillion dollars (state+local+federal) or 6 trillion in revenue, they are dishonest fools (but we knew that). Their contempt for any non-government activity couldn't be clearer.

My worry isn't the incentives facing corporate executives. It's the incentives facing far more powerful public-sector executives.

[Edited 2013-05-22 07:59:17]

User currently offlineStarAC17 From Canada, joined Aug 2003, 3380 posts, RR: 9
Reply 44, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1788 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 9):
Apple needs to tap some of the $102B it has oversees (of its total $145B hoard) to pay the $100B in dividends it's promised to its stockholders, yet repatriating it will cause it to be taxed.

Aren't they borrowing at near 0% interest to pay those dividends?

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
I wouldn't either. Somehow those lower rates in return for giving up loopholes might not materialize, especially given how much some people want more revenue for the government.

This is proposed by the Republicans, perhaps its rhetoric but it is one of the best things that they say.
Corporations will still lobby for loopholes but a simplified tax code with a lower rate is a good thing and it would make the IRS far more efficient because they do not have to go through a return like Mitt Romney's (just an example) with a toothcomb to see if there is anything that warrants an audit.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
You have the top 10% of the population paying over 70% of all taxes. The top 1% pay 37% of all taxes.
Quoting Mir (Reply 42):
Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
- You have the top 10% of the population paying over 70% of all taxes. The top 1% pay 37% of all taxes.

Since the top 10% holds 77% of the net worth in the country, and the top 1% holds 35% of it (those are 2010 numbers), that doesn't strike me as so out of line.

I agree.

The best example though is income and not worth as worth can add up over years which has already been taxed.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
Personally for the US, I think a 10% national VAT plus a graduated income tax (maximum rate of 20-25%, with very limited deductions) would be fair. EVERYONE would pay their fair share.

  
However I think you will find as BMI said that this will be difficult as you will have people and businesses supporting this publicly but really want the status quo because they can get away with paying much lower rates with the loopholes.

I think you have said before a tax return shouldn't be more than a page and I agree.



Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 45, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1773 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 42):
And since we have no problem shaming people who do one of those things, I don't see why we should have any problem shaming people who do the other.

The job of Senators is to legislate. The sad part of this 'event' is that no Senator suggested what changes they'd make to the law to get corporations to pay their fair share of the tax burden (at least as far as I was able to find).

I did hear the conservatives say they wouldn't change anything till they could change everything, which in effect is saying that nothing will change because there is no consensus on what to change, even amongst themselves.

Thus the conservatives get to bash the current tax system, which everyone agrees sucks, without upsetting all the lobbyists / special interests who are the ones that fund political campaigns and also are the major source of the complexity of the current tax laws.

Let's be clear: the tax system isn't a mess because individuals have made it so. The rules for us are relatively straight forward. The system is a mess because corporations and special interests use both lobbying and court challenges to get things they way they want them.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 46, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1771 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
It is the same with income tax. 20%, people will be generally OK with it. 40%, 50%, you start getting tax evasion problems.

Most people don't care so much about income tax because it's something that happens to other people rather than them.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
Most successful countries use a blend of taxation - VAT and Income tax, and try to keep both at a level acceptable enough to avoid compliance problems.

Most of those countries also have rather high taxes.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 34):
As for consumption taxes being regressive, that is a term used by propagandists, and unfortunately has found its way into common speech.

A little regressive taxation wouldn't be the worst thing considering how many Americans pay nothing. It's easy to be in favor of high taxes when you are almost completely a taker.

Quoting offloaded (Reply 35):
Governments want too many slices of the pie.

That's exactly why I think the fork should get heavier.

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 39):
You're saying 'this model of taxation is better than the current model (FairTax)' while simultaneously saying that a necessarily high one to pay for all government expenditure will force tax competition, which the US will lose.

Unless of course you reign in social spending and replace at least some of it with educational improvements which might actually pay off.

Quoting Mir (Reply 42):
Since the top 10% holds 77% of the net worth in the country, and the top 1% holds 35% of it (those are 2010 numbers), that doesn't strike me as so out of line.

They don't hold 77% or 35% of votes though. The result is much of the country playing with somebody else's chips.

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 44):
Corporations will still lobby for loopholes but a simplified tax code with a lower rate is a good thing

...until some politician decides he wants to turn trailer trash into apartment trash and gets a tax increase to pay for it.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineStarAC17 From Canada, joined Aug 2003, 3380 posts, RR: 9
Reply 47, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1765 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
They don't hold 77% or 35% of votes though. The result is much of the country playing with somebody else's chips.

That thinking is how democracy fails. If you let ten percent of the people control how the direction of a country goes then they enact things that serve them only and this will lead to a revolution.

The United States was founded rebelling against this very thing.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
...until some politician decides he wants to turn trailer trash into apartment trash and gets a tax increase to pay for it.

Then that politician should be shown the door.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
Most people don't care so much about income tax because it's something that happens to other people rather than them.

It may not be the case in the United States but in most developed countries if you work you pay taxes, even in the US you pay state and local taxes as well as payroll taxes even if you pay no federal tax.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
Most of those countries also have rather high taxes.

High taxes do not mean that a country will not be successful and most developed countries have high taxes and that is why people rush to immigrate to them.



Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Reply 48, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1755 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 45):
The sad part of this 'event' is that no Senator suggested what changes they'd make to the law to get corporations to pay their fair share of the tax burden (at least as far as I was able to find).

You assume, with your statement that corporations do not pay their "fair share".

I do believe I heard Rand Paul make a suggestion or two.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 49, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1750 times:

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 47):
That thinking is how democracy fails. If you let ten percent of the people control how the direction of a country goes then they enact things that serve them only and this will lead to a revolution.

A lot of the country pays very little in federal taxes. They still get control of the government as much as anyone. Getting the rest of the country to put a skin in the game and actually have to pay for what they vote on would be a good idea. It's too easy to spend when it's somebody else's money.

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 47):
Then that politician should be shown the door.

Or the podium at the Democratic National Convention.

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 47):
High taxes do not mean that a country will not be successful and most developed countries have high taxes and that is why people rush to immigrate to them.

It's free stuff for them. The simple issue is that the government is a service provider and shouldn't be redistributing wealth.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinelewis From Greece, joined Jul 1999, 3636 posts, RR: 5
Reply 50, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1754 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 32):

That seems to have worked well for everyone in Greece. If people see others getting away with cheating, they'll do the same

Ummm, assume much? Those generalizations I keep reading in here on the matter make me sick...


User currently offlineStarAC17 From Canada, joined Aug 2003, 3380 posts, RR: 9
Reply 51, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1744 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 49):
The simple issue is that the government is a service provider and shouldn't be redistributing wealth.

In places such as the Scandinavian countries government does just that except there are far more services available.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 49):
Or the podium at the Democratic National Convention.

Or the Republican One of its a defense program  
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 49):
A lot of the country pays very little in federal taxes. They still get control of the government as much as anyone.

Let's stop looking at the feds for a minute as most services that people use daily such as roads, electricity, water, sanitation, telecommunications, police, schools (of all levels) etc are operated at the local and state level and your locality only can vote in and everyone pays taxes in.

Federal government programs are larger in scale but much smaller in the number of things provided and all of them have a national standard.



Engineers Rule The World!!!!!
User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 27007 posts, RR: 57
Reply 52, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1741 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 32):
That seems to have worked well for everyone in Greece.
Quoting lewis (Reply 50):
Those generalizations I keep reading in here on the matter make me sick...

Well all it shows is ignorance and lack of understanding of the topic and lack of respect for fellow members whose Families and friends have been paying tax in Greece for decades.


User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Reply 53, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1739 times:

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 51):
Let's stop looking at the feds for a minute as most services that people use daily such as roads, electricity, water, sanitation, telecommunications, police, schools (of all levels) etc are operated at the local and state level and your locality only can vote in and everyone pays taxes in.

Which is why I have always said that I don't think my tax burden is too high; I do believe my taxes go to the wrong entities. I would gladly pay more to my locality, if I could offset that by paying less to the federal government.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 54, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1719 times:

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 51):
In places such as the Scandinavian countries government does just that except there are far more services available.

I'll pay for services only the government can provide, but the government too often runs over into other things that they need not be dealing in. Everything that the government redistributes has to come from somewhere, and if you happen to be that place, you have a problem.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 55, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1705 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 48):
You assume, with your statement that corporations do not pay their "fair share".

It is my opinion that corporations do not pay their fair share.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 48):
I do believe I heard Rand Paul make a suggestion or two.

I usually ignore him because what he says is so predictable.

Here's one:

Quote:

@SenRandPaul: Apple has done more to enrich people's lives than politicians will ever do.

Politicians made my elementary, high school and university educations possible, as well as public transportation, public water, public utilities, etc. Apple sells gizmos that play music. Rand Paul has his head up his orifice, yet again. The few sensible points he makes gets buried in the tons of other stuff he spews.

As they say, we get the politicians we deserve, and it seems KY deserves Rand Paul.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 49):
A lot of the country pays very little in federal taxes. They still get control of the government as much as anyone. Getting the rest of the country to put a skin in the game and actually have to pay for what they vote on would be a good idea. It's too easy to spend when it's somebody else's money.

You sound like you'd love to live in a place where the government is powerless, the rich get whatever they want and the poor have no power. There's plenty of places just like that. Heck, Mexico is just across the border. Head on down and show us what a great life you'll have in such a place. Nothing keeping you here, right?



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5452 posts, RR: 14
Reply 56, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1695 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 55):
Politicians made my elementary, high school and university educations possible, as well as public transportation, public water, public utilities, etc. Apple sells gizmos that play music. Rand Paul has his head up his orifice, yet again. The few sensible points he makes gets buried in the tons of other stuff he spews.

Apple may make those gizmos everyone likes, but, they employ around 50,000 people here in the US. Those people all pay the taxes with which the politicians pay for our essential services and our not-so-essential services.

That is repeated through-out the corporate and non-corporate world.

So yes, I will agree with Mr. Paul and say that Apple, along with all the other corporations and private employers, are more important than some pompous politicians whose only function appears to be to stay in office.



When seconds count...the police are minutes away.
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 57, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1690 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 55):
Politicians made my elementary, high school and university educations possible, as well as public transportation, public water, public utilities, etc. Apple sells gizmos that play music. Rand Paul has his head up his orifice, yet again.

Wow. talking about missing the elephant in the room...

Politicians (and government) in general do not provide anything except for one thing (more on that in a second). Your elementary, high school, university (I assume a state university), utilities etc were paid for by Apple and their tax-paying employees. All government did was take money from everyone's pockets and use it in a collective fashion.

Government does not create any value whatsoever - it only reallocates it. Note that I do not say that is a bad thing. But the fact is that government does not create value. Apple, GM, your corner donut shop, they create value.

There is one exception where government does create value (and can also destroy value if it is not careful. But it is non-financial. It is the Rule of Law. Only government can create the criminal and civil laws which allow us to live in a society where people have to live with each other at peace, which in itself allows members of society to go around creating value (i.e. do business). Imagine the waste of resources if every bank, every store or even every house had to have essentially a private army outside to defend it, because there is no police force. It also creates regulatory standards, allowing for safe food, etc.

As long as government doesn't go nuts with laws and regulations, that is a genuine value creator (or rather, a value multiplier). But that is the only exception I can think of.

[Edited 2013-05-22 12:45:58]


Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 58, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1678 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 55):
You sound like you'd love to live in a place where the government is powerless, the rich get whatever they want and the poor have no power.

No, I just think that middle and lower class voters would think differently if voting for the pro-welfare, pro-bailout candidate would mean an extra X dollars on their tax bill each year.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 55):
Politicians made my elementary, high school and university educations possible,

Showing up and doing your work had something to do with it too.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 59, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1669 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 56):
So yes, I will agree with Mr. Paul and say that Apple, along with all the other corporations and private employers, are more important than some pompous politicians whose only function appears to be to stay in office.

That's not what Paul said. He said "Apple has done more to enrich people's lives than politicians will ever do". I disagree with that, and will go a step further and say what Apple has done would have been impossible without government and thus politicians, not just because they insure the rule of law, but for many other things too.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 57):
All government did was take money from everyone's pockets and use it in a collective fashion.

You talk as if that is without merit.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 57):
But the fact is that government does not create value.

In your world view this is important but in mine it's important to recognize that the government enables the creation of value, day in and day out.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 58):
Showing up and doing your work had something to do with it too.

But it wouldn't be possible without the government's role too, which what I said.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 60, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 1661 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 59):
You talk as if that is without merit.

I specifically said:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 57):
Note that I do not say that is a bad thing
Quoting Revelation (Reply 59):
In your world view this is important but in mine it's important to recognize that the government enables the creation of value, day in and day out.

Which I recognize when I talk about the Rule of Law. It enables, but does not create.

And without the likes of Apple, GM and your local donut shop, it can enable all it wants but schools will not be built, streets will not be paved, no matter how many laws and mandates government passes - unless we go into communist mode and everyone is a slave to the government, in which case instead of an iMac you will have this:



and GM will be making:




Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 61, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 1656 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 60):
Which I recognize when I talk about the Rule of Law. It enables, but does not create.

Indeed so.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 60):
And without the likes of Apple, GM and your local donut shop, it can enable all it wants but schools will not be built, streets will not be paved, no matter how many laws and mandates government passes

I'm not sure what the disagreement is. Corporations create wealth. Governments enable the creation of that wealth. Governments are funded via taxes. Everyone would like taxes to be zero, and to a degree Apple has achieved that, but if they are zero then there is no enablement. Jobs and Woz would most likely have been barefoot farm boys if there wasn't public education. We'd have to hope that some children of wealthy capitalists decided to get interested in electronics instead of money management for there to have been anything like Apple.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 62, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days ago) and read 1655 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 61):
veryone would like taxes to be zero, and to a degree Apple has achieved that, but if they are zero then there is no enablement

NO! Apple pays full taxes on their US activities, including any direct sales overseas, royalty receipts etc it may receive from overseas - basically anything where Apple (US) had to create an invoice for.

The funds in question are the proceeds of overseas legal entities it owns. Those legal entities were created or purchased from Apple's after-tax profits. Those investments have done well - all on activity outside the US (under Tax Territoriality, the US government has no tax claim on those profits). But instead of welcoming that money back to America, the government is demanding a big chunk of money for the privilege of bringing it back.

Apple should keep those funds overseas, and when a more reasonable administration comes to power, declares a tax holiday or permanently eliminates the repatriation tax, they will benefit from an immediate injection of (by then) at least a trillion dollars into the US economy from Apple, Google, and the thousands of American firms who have money stuck overseas.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlineQFA380 From Australia, joined Jul 2005, 2077 posts, RR: 1
Reply 63, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days ago) and read 1647 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 59):
it's important to recognize that the government enables the creation of value, day in and day out.

Aren't they benevolent, we're just serfs who just toil away gratefully because they let us.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 52):

Well all it shows is ignorance and lack of understanding of the topic and lack of respect for fellow members whose Families and friends have been paying tax in Greece for decades.

I'll just defer to the IMF on that one, this report from only a few weeks ago.

Quoting http://www.imf.org/external/np/ms/2013/050313.htm :

Very little progress has been made in tackling Greece’s notorious tax evasion. The rich and self-employed are simply not paying their fair share, which has forced an excessive reliance on across-the-board expenditure cuts and higher taxes on those earning a salary or a pension.


User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 64, posted (1 year 4 months 4 days ago) and read 1642 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 63):
Aren't they benevolent, we're just serfs who just toil away gratefully because they let us.

Feel free to go to Mexico and check out what life is like with the rich calling the shots and an ineffectual government, then you can see serfdom in action. Actually serfs had it better in many cases.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 65, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 1625 times:

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 44):
The best example though is income and not worth as worth can add up over years which has already been taxed.

True, but I wouldn't expect the numbers to slide that much. By measure of financial wealth, the numbers are even more skewed (top 1% has 42% of the financial wealth, the top 10% has 84%).

Quoting Revelation (Reply 45):
The job of Senators is to legislate.

More broadly, the job of the Senators is to represent their constituents in government. Legislation is part of that, but fact-finding is another part.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 45):
The sad part of this 'event' is that no Senator suggested what changes they'd make to the law to get corporations to pay their fair share of the tax burden (at least as far as I was able to find).

That is a real shame, but it's not going to be easy to close all (or even some) of them, and it'll have to be done very carefully.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 46):
They don't hold 77% or 35% of votes though.

Nor should they. Democracy is not a pay-to-play system. Once you remove the incentive for government to care about a certain class, that class will find it incredibly difficult to get their attention back (short of violence). Eventually, government will become the tool of the super-elite (which it already sort of it, but magnify that by 1000 and you'll start to get the picture).

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8283 posts, RR: 8
Reply 66, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 1579 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
That's the ass backwards way to look at it.

Only if you are anti-government.

Personally I am more than appreciative of the business environment government provided in both the US and Australia.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
The government isn't a partner,

I believe companies (especially small companies) need to understand that when it comes to profits the IRS is your partner and can become very nasty if you don't hand over the money they are due. I use a "Tax Reserve" account at the bank and transferred all taxes that would have to be paid as soon as the liability was incurred. When I cut my monthly paycheck all related taxes were covered with an internet transfer into that tax account.

That left me in a position where I was never unable to pay the taxes on time. I'd even do it on the internet when I was overseas.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
You obviously do not understand the FairTax scheme.

I understand it enough to recognize that it i a wet dream of the wealthy and a very dangerous program for average and poor Americans.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 29):
It could, in theory, become regressive but in practice would almost certainly not be.

Any tax related to spending is going to be regressive. the poor will pa a far higher percentage of their income than the wealthy - but that is a basic objective of the wealthy. Why do you think Romney was in favor of eliminating the Capital Gains Tax?

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 30):
Then there is the 'cash economy', nothing is stopping you or your builder from exchanging at a lower price is it is cash,

The cash thrives when average people believe that they are being ripped of by the tax system.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 31):
Besides the fact that they cost $50k?

A drop in the bucket for the wealthy. Why do you believe they love the "FairTax"?

Quoting Revelation (Reply 61):
Corporations create wealth. Governments enable the creation of that wealth.

Governments can crate wealth when they create programs for infrastructure development, equipment and capital assets for Defense, etc. Government grants for R&D in many fields generates wealth - all you have to do is look at MD Anderson in Houston where up to a thousand research programs can be going on at any one time.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 62):
But instead of welcoming that money back to America, the government is demanding a big chunk of money for the privilege of bringing it back.

Personally I liked the system that was used for individuals when we lived overseas. Your US taxes were the taxes calculated on your US returns LESS the income taxes you paid overseas. Not that difficult and, for corporations, it would allow for the various deductions valid in the US but not deductible in the various countries.

It is not complicated - let Apple & other companies take all the tax breaks available internationally and then take advantage of all tax breaks domestically. Calling it a burden is a joke. Corporations get far more tax breaks than average American families.

Quoting Mir (Reply 65):
Democracy is not a pay-to-play system.

It is these days, The USSC has made it far easier for wealth to make the financial payments necessary to control politicians - even at the primary stages. These days it's cash over country.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 67, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 1577 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 59):
But it wouldn't be possible without the government's role too, which what I said.

So why is it fair that you pay more in taxes for the same education as the guy who sat next to you, in the same classroom in the same school, with the same teachers and reading the same books as you who is now digging ditches or stacking boxes somewhere?

Quoting Mir (Reply 65):
Once you remove the incentive for government to care about a certain class, that class will find it incredibly difficult to get their attention back (short of violence).

How is it fair that a large portion of this country gets to vote themselves into the bank accounts of others? Sure, why not spend some of someone else's money on welfare?

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 66):
I believe companies (especially small companies) need to understand that when it comes to profits the IRS is your partner and can become very nasty if you don't hand over the money they are due.

That's not a partnership. That's parasitism at best. The government shouldn't get a seat in the boardroom because they provide a service. Just like the garbage man or the exterminator.

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 66):
Why do you think Romney was in favor of eliminating the Capital Gains Tax?

You mean besides the fact that the dividend money has already been taxed once (so now it gets it twice at full rates) and that it helps anyone with a retirement account?

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 66):
Personally I liked the system that was used for individuals when we lived overseas. Your US taxes were the taxes calculated on your US returns LESS the income taxes you paid overseas.

Which is absolutely ridiculous. It should be quite simple: earn in the US, pay US taxes. Earn it outside the US, don't pay US taxes.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 68, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 1569 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):

So why is it fair that you pay more in taxes for the same education as the guy who sat next to you, in the same classroom in the same school, with the same teachers and reading the same books as you who is now digging ditches or stacking boxes somewhere?

I paid a lot less than those guys, and make a lot more. It is a two way street.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):
How is it fair that a large portion of this country gets to vote themselves into the bank accounts of others? Sure, why not spend some of someone else's money on welfare?

This is a double edged vote, and as long as the vote is close to 50/50 ., it is even odds every election for each side.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):
That's not a partnership. That's parasitism at best. The government shouldn't get a seat in the boardroom because they provide a service. Just like the garbage man or the exterminator.

The government provides valuable services. They also are punished by bad business practices (Enron? ) The government has a vested interest in it's jurisdiction, just as a business has interest in a government that can expand it's business.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):
You mean besides the fact that the dividend money has already been taxed once (so now it gets it twice at full rates) and that it helps anyone with a retirement account?

The government provides a service to corporations, just as it does to individuals. Not always overlapping ,and not always discombobulated ,

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):
Which is absolutely ridiculous. It should be quite simple: earn in the US, pay US taxes. Earn it outside the US, don't pay US taxes.

Earnings are not separate from production , and vise versa. It is complicated. While I can see some of the points about where money should and should not be taxed,.... at the end of the day... it is a democracy.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 69, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1562 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 68):
I paid a lot less than those guys, and make a lot more. It is a two way street.

I'm not necessarily talking about college, although that's included. I'm talking all the way back to kindergarten.

It is not because of any government policy that I am a college graduate while one of my closest childhood friends who grew up down the street and went to the same schools, having the same teachers, classes, and assignments for 13-14 years, is in the county jail. It is not fair that throughout my life I pay more for having received the exact same service.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 68):
This is a double edged vote, and as long as the vote is close to 50/50 ., it is even odds every election for each side.

And how much might swing if the average person was going to have to pay X dollars more in taxes to fund some worthless social program? Nobody is as discerning with the money of others as they are with their own.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 68):
They also are punished by bad business practices (Enron? )

That's not punishment, just providing other services. (Bailouts should not be one of them)

Quoting casinterest (Reply 68):
The government provides a service to corporations, just as it does to individuals. Not always overlapping ,and not always discombobulated ,

That doesn't mean that the revenue streams need to be split, as it is all people in the end. The money that's collected in corporate taxes would otherwise be wages, dividends, capital gains, or reinvestment.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 68):
Earnings are not separate from production , and vise versa.

Companies producing here are producing a lot of tax revenue too, even if it isn't corporate income tax. The government should not be punishing exports.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 70, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1560 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):

So why is it fair that you pay more in taxes for the same education as the guy who sat next to you, in the same classroom in the same school, with the same teachers and reading the same books as you who is now digging ditches or stacking boxes somewhere?

It's simple. Bill Clinton explained it in 2012 at Obama's nominating convention: Are we in this together, or are we in this for ourselves? Your approach is that I should be in it for myself and resent the fact that I pay more taxes than a student who didn't advance as far. My approach is that we're all in this together, and I'm making more money than a student who didn't make it as far, and I'm OK with that. There was not and is not any process that would have predicted that I would be the one that would make it, but the reality is that I paid back my student loans on time and I'm sure I've added many multiples of what was invested in me back to the system, and I'm 100% OK with that, because it's not all about me.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 71, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1559 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 69):
It is not fair that throughout my life I pay more for having received the exact same service.

You didn't just receive a service. You accepted it and embraced it. Some folks did not do the same. I watch a few folks sell short their education to church, marriage, drugs, and many other alternative paths. Some of these folks did so knowingly, some did not.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 69):
And how much might swing if the average person was going to have to pay X dollars more in taxes to fund some worthless social program? Nobody is as discerning with the money of others as they are with their own.

It's not just social programs. It is infrastructure , defense, rule of law/enforcement. People make choices based on cost benefit,



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 72, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1556 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 70):
Bill Clinton explained it in 2012 at Obama's nominating convention: Are we in this together, or are we in this for ourselves?

Ourselves. People have enough problems without taking on those of others involuntarily.

The government is there to keep people from not allowing us to be in it for ourselves and provide services that cannot be provided reasonably by any other entity.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 71):
You didn't just receive a service. You accepted it and embraced it. Some folks did not do the same. I watch a few folks sell short their education to church, marriage, drugs, and many other alternative paths. Some of these folks did so knowingly, some did not.

The end result being that I get the privilege of paying not only for my success, or at least some ground work of it, but also subsidizing the failures of others. Yay freedom!

Quoting casinterest (Reply 71):
It's not just social programs. It is infrastructure , defense, rule of law/enforcement. People make choices based on cost benefit

Either way, cost benefit changes when it isn't your money.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 73, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1554 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 72):
Either way, cost benefit changes when it isn't your money.

It's not your money? it is your friends/colleagues/community that make and benefit from these decisions.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 74, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1553 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 73):
It's not your money?

Considering how skewed the tax revenue is, chances are it isn't. Why not vote to spend more money when you have a low enough income with sufficient deductions to not be effected when the bills have to be paid?



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 75, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1550 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 74):

Considering how skewed the tax revenue is, chances are it isn't. Why not vote to spend more money when you have a low enough income with sufficient deductions to not be effected when the bills have to be paid?

Because at some point it will be you with the funds if you are worth any of that education. There is a corollary to your quote, Why vote for the folks most likely to send you into war?



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 76, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1546 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 75):
Because at some point it will be you with the funds if you are worth any of that education.

And that's exactly why I'm a fiscal conservative. Of course, that doesn't really account for the significant number of people who could go through life uneducated and likely never pay much, if anything, in income tax.

Quoting casinterest (Reply 75):
Why vote for the folks most likely to send you into war?

Because they almost certainly wouldn't. Even if there was a draft I'd be unlikely to actually be drafted and if I were I'd be very unlikely to actually see combat unless I wanted to.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinecasinterest From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4629 posts, RR: 2
Reply 77, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1545 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 76):
likely never pay much, if anything, in income tax.

You are so worried about what the pay.... They don't get much either.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 76):
Because they almost certainly wouldn't. Even if there was a draft I'd be unlikely to actually be drafted and if I were I'd be very unlikely to actually see combat unless I wanted to.

Not aboujt you.... it is about those that are dictated to by society. Not those that choose to put forth a bit of though into the matter.



Older than I just was ,and younger than I will soo be.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 78, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 1541 times:

Quoting casinterest (Reply 77):
You are so worried about what the pay.... They don't get much either.

But where do they get it from? If they're getting it via the government (or somewhat similarly, minimum wage or union friendly legislation) they will vote for their interests, which in this case would mean taking money from others with the help of government policy.

At least minimum wage doesn't spare anyone the way tax legislation does, since pretty much everyone patronizes businesses that pay some workers minimum wage.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 79, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 1499 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 67):
How is it fair that a large portion of this country gets to vote themselves into the bank accounts of others? Sure, why not spend some of someone else's money on welfare?

Or we could spend it on incentives for businesses. That street runs both ways.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 72):
The end result being that I get the privilege of paying not only for my success, or at least some ground work of it, but also subsidizing the failures of others. Yay freedom!
http://www.heritage.org/index/

Move to a more free country if you want. You could try Singapore, but I wouldn't get attached to your freedom of speech if you did that. Or you could try Denmark or Canada, but then you'd be stuck paying into that nasty socialized medicine thing.

My bet is that you'd probably figure out that while certain places may have individual advantages, on the whole the US is more free than any of those places.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 80, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 1491 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 79):

My bet is that you'd probably figure out that while certain places may have individual advantages, on the whole the US is more free than any of those places.

It was. If we could go back to the Clinton years (Mean ol' Clinton with his tiny, tiny government, and his pre-Patriot Act freedom), we would have a sustainable, prosperous country.

But the government sector has _exploded_ in size since Clinton's terms.

Rule of law has collapsed as our government kills at will, and no longer respects any privacy rights. The government's need to pay for itself has led it to not only debase the people's assets (print dollars) but also make plots to tax them as much as possible, even if it leads to collapse in 20-30 years.

In the end, I believe governments and corporations are becoming more and more similar. They are both profit-maximizing collaborative groups that try to earn money on behalf of their constituents. Government is just another kind of corporation. Corporations are just another kind of government.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 81, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 1478 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 79):
Move to a more free country if you want.

That's a bad way to look at it. The goal isn't to say "Well, we're better off than them so we're fine." Freedom should be maximized in all its forms, so simply having lower taxes than Place A and more freedom of expression than Place B isn't going to cut it.

Quoting Mir (Reply 79):
You could try Singapore,

Considering how much they tax cars, I don't think so.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 82, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1466 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 72):
People have enough problems without taking on those of others involuntarily.

Unless you are born into great wealth, I think a lot of your success in life will be determined how well you take on other people's problems, either voluntarily or involuntarily. The act of only taking on other people's problems only when it purely benefits you is widely detested by others and is quite visible to others even if you try to hide it. Even if you have great wealth a lot of your success would be how well you can get others to take on your problems, and while it seems you can make them do it voluntarily via financial inducement, there's a lot more to it.

Based on your various statements here I wouldn't be surprised if your lack of success at job interviews is based on the very obvious self centered attitude you display.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 72):
The end result being that I get the privilege of paying not only for my success, or at least some ground work of it, but also subsidizing the failures of others.

That ground work was funded by others. Right now you've been a burden to society right from the minute you popped out of the womb. Sure your parents have been covering a lot of it, but they too were in that position before they perhaps became a net win, and it'd be a statistical improbability that everyone in your blood line was cash positive before their days were done.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 72):
Either way, cost benefit changes when it isn't your money.

Interesting how conservatives are crystal clear that it's the corporations that generate money yet every dollar the corporations take in comes from a consumer who may or may not be a net positive financial contributor to society.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 81):
That's a bad way to look at it. The goal isn't to say "Well, we're better off than them so we're fine." Freedom should be maximized in all its forms, so simply having lower taxes than Place A and more freedom of expression than Place B isn't going to cut it.

The point is that we've had millennia to develop and try out all kinds of social organizations, and here we are. You can talk all you want about what should be, but it's clear your view is not universally agreed to, or it'd exist somewhere.

Your views are strongly individualist, but pretty much every form of social organization based on such has failed, for what to me seem to be very obvious reasons.

Your lack of ability to find a place organized along the lines you stridently speak of speaks volumes to most of us.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 83, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1452 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 81):
Freedom should be maximized in all its forms, so simply having lower taxes than Place A and more freedom of expression than Place B isn't going to cut it.

Except that that theory runs up against the laws of practicality and a functioning society. There are tradeoffs in everything, and your libertarian paradise just flat-out doesn't exist. The US is probably as close as you're going to get.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 81):
Considering how much they tax cars, I don't think so.

Lower income taxes means the money has to come from somewhere, doesn't it?

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 84, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1452 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 83):
Lower income taxes means the money has to come from somewhere, doesn't it?

Let's say you had to change jobs, and your income is lowered. Do you

A) get the money from somewhere else, or

B) reduce your expenses?



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 85, posted (1 year 4 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1444 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 82):
I think a lot of your success in life will be determined how well you take on other people's problems, either voluntarily or involuntarily.

The trick is picking the right problems for the right people.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 82):
That ground work was funded by others. Right now you've been a burden to society right from the minute you popped out of the womb.

That's the same ground work as a lot of other people and being the same burden as any number of others. But some of us get to pay more for the same government services.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 82):
Your views are strongly individualist, but pretty much every form of social organization based on such has failed, for what to me seem to be very obvious reasons.

The reason is that those who are "takers" vote too. Why not vote for the candidate that will give you free money and free healthcare? If you're not a millionaire, why not vote for the guy who wants to increase taxes on millionaires?

Quoting Mir (Reply 83):
The US is probably as close as you're going to get.

But not close enough. Striving for perfection is a worthy goal.

Quoting Mir (Reply 83):
Lower income taxes means the money has to come from somewhere, doesn't it?

As I understand it the automotive permits have little to do with revenue and more to do with fighting congestion. Not that that makes it okay.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 86, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 1407 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 85):
Your views are strongly individualist, but pretty much every form of social organization based on such has failed, for what to me seem to be very obvious reasons.

The reason is that those who are "takers" vote too.

You seem to be locked into that theme/narrative, but there's a more obvious reason: strong individualists don't integrate/cope well with others who aren't strong individualists, thus there is no obvious place where they've maintained an advanced society based on their views.

Sure, you have some homesteaders that live that lifestyle and don't ask for the support of others. They often live in unincorporated areas (thus no property tax) and manage by doing their own hunting and fishing and farming and bartering so they don't generate enough income to be taxed. Thus they support themselves and don't support others involuntarily. Sounds great, no? Why not tell us why you don't go to one of those places?

Somehow you seem to think that if you use your rhetorical skills long and hard enough the one man one vote system will go away and a world of, for and by the capitalists will replace it, and we'll all be in heaven on earth. To me that's all nonsense. Many of the champions of capital don't like to admit it, but their success rests on the shoulders of countless average working stiffs, and it's amazing to me how so many people seem to thing the problem is that the rich are having too tough of a time. It seems that many people's hatred of the poor has been overcompensated by endless amounts of sympathy for the rich.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 87, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 1405 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 86):
Sure, you have some homesteaders that live that lifestyle and don't ask for the support of others. They often live in unincorporated areas (thus no property tax) and manage by doing their own hunting and fishing and farming and bartering so they don't generate enough income to be taxed. Thus they support themselves and don't support others involuntarily. Sounds great, no? Why not tell us why you don't go to one of those places?

Individualism and isolationism are not the same thing. But there is something to be said for living in an unincorporated area, or at least one with loose enforcement. Burning leaves is so much nicer than dealing with those stupid bags.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 86):
Somehow you seem to think that if you use your rhetorical skills long and hard enough the one man one vote system will go away and a world of, for and by the capitalists will replace it, and we'll all be in heaven on earth.

I'm not seriously suggesting that voting rights be split up based on taxes paid. But there is a serious disconnect when politicians are rewarded by voters for spending money that originates with neither group. It's true that people treat money that is theirs that they earned differently from someone else's money.

And the world for and by capitalists already exists. Capitalism never loses. It might duck out of sight or have to be quiet about its existence, but those who seek to limit or abolish it never win.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 86):
Many of the champions of capital don't like to admit it, but their success rests on the shoulders of countless average working stiffs, and it's amazing to me how so many people seem to thing the problem is that the rich are having too tough of a time.

Oh this is all a calculated gamble, but I'm willing to bet that I'm smart enough with a strong enough work ethic to be better off with fewer economic restrictions. Other people would end up exactly the same or possibly even worse off than before.

Of course, it's not like there isn't already plenty of evidence that those people who would say "You didn't build that" are full of it.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 86):
It seems that many people's hatred of the poor has been overcompensated by endless amounts of sympathy for the rich.

I don't think that expecting people to support themselves counts as hatred. As far as the rich, I was taught at an early age to keep my hands to myself and not take things that weren't mine. Apparently for many that lesson gets forgotten when they reach voting age.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 88, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 1401 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 84):
Let's say you had to change jobs, and your income is lowered. Do you

A) get the money from somewhere else, or

B) reduce your expenses?

First I'd try A. If that wasn't possible, or wasn't practical for some reason or other, then I'd do B. Or I might do both at the same time. But I wouldn't just discount A.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 85):
Striving for perfection is a worthy goal.

There's a reason that utopias are found only in fiction. And there's a reason that they're often not really utopias once you start digging below the surface.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 89, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 1398 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 88):
First I'd try A. If that wasn't possible, or wasn't practical for some reason or other, then I'd do B. Or I might do both at the same time. But I wouldn't just discount A.

That is very informative. So, "living within your means" is not a hard and fast rule for you.

Explains a lot.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 90, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 1397 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 88):
There's a reason that utopias are found only in fiction. And there's a reason that they're often not really utopias once you start digging below the surface.

That doesn't mean you don't try. Simply settling for being decent or good enough is a poor way to go about life.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 91, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1369 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 87):
Individualism and isolationism are not the same thing.

Not the same but individualism tends to lead to isolationism for the reason I give: strong individualists don't integrate/cope well with others who aren't strong individualists.

Homesteaders are the only group of strong individualists I know of who are getting by as a society, but I wouldn't call it a very advanced society, although others might argue that point.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 87):
I don't think that expecting people to support themselves counts as hatred.

Note I didn't say you are a hater.

I'm saying that in general I see a lot of hatred from middle class people that is directed at the poor and in these same people a lot more sympathy for the rich than for the poor, which strikes me as strange.

However in your comments I haven't seen much if any commentary on what should happen when people can't/don't meet your expectations.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 92, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1364 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 89):
That is very informative. So, "living within your means" is not a hard and fast rule for you.

How exactly is trying to find alternate sources of income to replace what was lost not living within your means? You do realize that people take second or even third jobs all the time in order to make ends meet, right?

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 93, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1357 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 91):
Not the same but individualism tends to lead to isolationism for the reason I give: strong individualists don't integrate/cope well with others who aren't strong individualists.

It's easy to come to that conclusion when the only way to be strongly individualist is to be isolated and under the radar. The bunker crowd cannot live openly.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 91):
However in your comments I haven't seen much if any commentary on what should happen when people can't/don't meet your expectations.

They live a pretty crummy life, just not at the expense of the taxpayer. Being poor sucks no matter where you are, so it might as well be cheaper for everyone else.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 94, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 1353 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 93):
It's easy to come to that conclusion when the only way to be strongly individualist is to be isolated

It's kind of hard to be strongly individualistic and not isolated, the contrary would mean that you take advantage of integrated society for the period it benefits you the most, then all of a sudden you decide you want to be isolated. At that point you can walk the walk and truly become self-reliant, or you can just talk about it an awful lot yet continue to in general still keep reaping the benefits that integrated society provides.

I respect the homesteaders a lot more than someone like Paul Ryan who uses Social Security benefits (that he clearly was entitled to) to get educated, then proceeds to do what he can to make sure they aren't available to others.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 93):
They live a pretty crummy life, just not at the expense of the taxpayer. Being poor sucks no matter where you are, so it might as well be cheaper for everyone else.

It's pretty clear the will of the people is to establish and maintain a social safety net. Believe it or not, 'welfare for life' is a lot harder to achieve, and those changes came about when the parties found compromises, like in the Reagan/O'Neil and Clinton/Gingrich eras. However these changes don't seem to have done anything to dent many people's sympathy for the wealthy and hatred for the poor.

I feel there should be a lot more stipulations on use of the funds that are being provided. I think it's absurd that we use public funds to buy people things that are clearly unhealthy. I think the technology exists to make it quite possible to make the system more fair to the payers, yet it's hard to get anything accomplished in Washington today. A lot of times it's because of absurd ideological rationale like we refuse to close any existing tax loopholes till the whole system gets restructured, which is absurd because there's absolutely no agreement on how to restructure the tax system, so nothing gets addressed.

See, we somehow got back to taxation!  



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 95, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 1346 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 94):
It's kind of hard to be strongly individualistic and not isolated, the contrary would mean that you take advantage of integrated society for the period it benefits you the most, then all of a sudden you decide you want to be isolated.

That's what individualism is: doing what you want and dealing with whom you want to deal with voluntarily. Personal isolation is an option, but by no means mandatory. People would still associate with each other if all government and taxes were suspended.

There's nothing wrong with integration or "togetherness" with the caveat that it needs to be voluntary. Mutual funds are great. Social Security, not so much.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 94):
It's pretty clear the will of the people is to establish and maintain a social safety net.

Then go make a voluntary safety net if everyone thinks it's so wonderful. You should have no shortage of takers.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 94):
However these changes don't seem to have done anything to dent many people's sympathy for the wealthy and hatred for the poor.

It's hard not to sympathize with the wealthy when a large portion of the country wants to take more of their money to fund various social programs that will deliver little benefit to the wealthy. If I were them, it would be hard not to feel hunted.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8842 posts, RR: 24
Reply 96, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1345 times:

Quoting Mir (Reply 92):
How exactly is trying to find alternate sources of income to replace what was lost not living within your means? You do realize that people take second or even third jobs all the time in order to make ends meet, right?

I specifically said "Income". I originally typed "salary", but changed it because if your salary drops, sure enough you can maybe get an extra job. "Income" denotes all income, from all sources.

From your response, it sounded like you wanted to hit up parents, friends, maybe government assistance, or take out a loan before even considering reducing your expenditures.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 97, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 1338 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 95):
That's what individualism is: doing what you want and dealing with whom you want to deal with voluntarily.

Surely a decision made in most cases from the standpoint of already having reaped many of the benefits of an integrated society and often by people who concurrently or eventually end up taking advantage of such benefits.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 95):
Personal isolation is an option, but by no means mandatory.

Indeed, we're in agreement. All I'm saying is it's hard to have one without the other, but certainly not impossible.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 95):
People would still associate with each other if all government and taxes were suspended.

It seems many feel such association will only result in guns being brandished.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 95):
Then go make a voluntary safety net if everyone thinks it's so wonderful. You should have no shortage of takers.

We do, indeed in the form of investments and insurances. The problem is that some will never have the resources to participate in such.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 95):
It's hard not to sympathize with the wealthy when a large portion of the country wants to take more of their money to fund various social programs that will deliver little benefit to the wealthy.

In historical terms, the wealthy's contribution to society is at an all time low. The huge givebacks of the Reagan and GWB eras were supposed to result in stable economic growth, but instead it's resulted in the rich getting richer, the poor getting poorer, hoarding by the wealthy, creation of untenable investment vehicles such as sub-prime mortgages, mortgage backed securities, and collateralized debt obligations, extensive use of off-shore constructs to avoid such contributions to society, along with complaints about making the contributions when they want to repatriate the funds without taxation.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 95):
If I were them, it would be hard not to feel hunted.

You aren't them, yet you seem to strongly sympathize with their 'burdens', which seems strange to me.

I'd be more concerned about someone who can't afford food or an education instead of worrying more about the 'burdens' of the rich or about what percentage of the poor scam the system.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 98, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 1334 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 97):
Surely a decision made in most cases from the standpoint of already having reaped many of the benefits of an integrated society and often by people who concurrently or eventually end up taking advantage of such benefits.

Then if such integration is so obviously an advantage, there should be no need for it to be mandatory.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 97):
It seems many feel such association will only result in guns being brandished.

Government coercion is in no case a prerequisite for collaboration. People worked together before there were any governments. Of course, you have to understand that, at it's most basic level, even altruism and selflessness is self-serving.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 97):
The problem is that some will never have the resources to participate in such.

Which would then make them takers.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 97):
The huge givebacks of the Reagan and GWB eras were supposed to result in stable economic growth, but instead it's resulted in the rich getting richer

This should be much simpler. You don't give them their money (and let's be clear, it is their money) because it fits some economic master plan or because it serves everyone else. You let them have it because it's their money. Really, when they pay taxes they are letting us have their money. Their money works for them, not for us.

The wealthy don't owe you or me anything. They should pay the government for services rendered like anyone else, but this societal contribution idea is all crap.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 97):
You aren't them, yet you seem to strongly sympathize with their 'burdens', which seems strange to me.

I think I'm about to walk right into the crosshairs. Not as much as some, but enough. And thinking that I might have to put less into my retirement accounts or spend less on televisions and cars to help fund the Kools and Mountain Dew habits of trailer dwellers annoys me.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 27007 posts, RR: 57
Reply 99, posted (1 year 4 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 1336 times:

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 63):
I'll just defer to the IMF on that one, this report from only a few weeks ago.
Quoting QFA380 (Reply 63):
The rich and self-employed are simply not paying their fair share,
Quoting QFA380 (Reply 32):
everyone in Greece.

Im glad you corrected yourself and saw your mistake by stating everyone .  


User currently offlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21642 posts, RR: 55
Reply 100, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1303 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 96):
I specifically said "Income". I originally typed "salary", but changed it because if your salary drops, sure enough you can maybe get an extra job. "Income" denotes all income, from all sources.

Fair enough - the two are sometimes used interchangeably, so I misunderstood.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 96):
From your response, it sounded like you wanted to hit up parents, friends, maybe government assistance, or take out a loan before even considering reducing your expenditures.

Absolutely not. I've been out of work before, and while I did get some parental support (in the form of free rent), I cut back on my expenditures quite a bit, and didn't even think about government assistance or a loan. But that was only because I couldn't find anything to replace my lost income at the time - had I been able to find a different job with a comparable salary, I would have done it. Reducing expenditures was certainly not Plan A (though I ended up having to do it).

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 101, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1290 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 98):
Then if such integration is so obviously an advantage, there should be no need for it to be mandatory.

It's mandatory because we want to invest in everybody. The general idea is that we as a society value other human beings. It seems you aren't on board with that.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 98):
Which would then make them takers.

Which is exactly what you are up to this point in your life.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 98):
And thinking that I might have to put less into my retirement accounts or spend less on televisions and cars to help fund the Kools and Mountain Dew habits of trailer dwellers annoys me.

Yet you will also be investing in the Jobs and Woz of the future.

And as above, I'm all in favor of reforms, but it won't happen with a broken Congress.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15745 posts, RR: 27
Reply 102, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 1266 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 101):
The general idea is that we as a society value other human beings. It seems you aren't on board with that.

Many people don't seem to value themselves that much. And yet we just say that not having an education or work ethic is okay, we'll just send you a check.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 101):
Which is exactly what you are up to this point in your life.

I got the exact same things from the government as any number of other people. Why should I get to pay more than most of them for it?

Quoting Revelation (Reply 101):
Yet you will also be investing in the Jobs and Woz of the future.

And the difference between them and the trailer park queens has nothing to do with the taxpayers or government.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12569 posts, RR: 25
Reply 103, posted (1 year 4 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 1261 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 102):
And yet we just say that not having an education or work ethic is okay, we'll just send you a check.

It's a scientific fact that a child's brain doesn't mature without reasonable amounts of nutrition, so we certainly will end up with people who can't/won't work if they don't get decent nutrition growing up.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineQFA380 From Australia, joined Jul 2005, 2077 posts, RR: 1
Reply 104, posted (1 year 3 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 1190 times:

Quoting OA260 (Reply 99):
Im glad you corrected yourself and saw your mistake by stating everyone .  

Way to misquote me, the system has not worked well for everyone in Greece because some are abusing the tax system to avoid paying what they're legally required to.

Unless of course you're telling me that the system is working great for a lot of people who are doing fine, those 27% unemployed probably aren't enjoying the fruits of the tax system though.


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