AA7295
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What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 7:06 am

After reading much about US citizens renouncing their citizenship to avoid paying US tax abroad, and with all this argument over the proposed Buffet Rule... one has to ask? What's your problem with paying tax?

The money earned by tax is not only used for defense, health care, social security, education, but also is used for items that we (the citizenry as a whole) take for granted such as food stamps, highways and transportation, public defenders to defend you, the FAA, police, fire and ambulance services, and all other elements that give us the modern infrastructure that allow us to go by with our day to day activities.

I think that paying tax is a form of paying it forward for the future generation. If you make money in this country, or have benefited from what this country provides to allow you to make money (super fast internet to get what you need done, roads to get you to where you need to go, bank networks to get access to your money) then you should pay tax.

When I think about these multimillionaires and billionaires who do anything to avoid paying tax, it makes me sick that they are the ones who should be paying taxes but are avoiding it. Are people love for money deeper than paying back society and assisting the future generation?

What are your thoughts?
 
Mir
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 7:25 am

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
Are people love for money deeper than paying back society and assisting the future generation?

There are people who couldn't care less about the future of the country if it would save them a few dollars, yes.

I don't really know what people in the US are complaining about. We've got a pretty good tax rate when compared to other developed countries. Yes, the tax code could be simpler (I pay income tax to four entities - that's a paperwork headache and a half that I could do without), but we've got services that need to be paid for and a debt that needs to be paid down, so it is what it is.

-Mir
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smittyone
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 12:04 pm

I think the simple answer to many questions along the line of "Why do people do x,y or z in the US" is that some people just suck. They would suck wherever they lived, but the relatively high level of freedom in America allows those people to suck to the greatest possible degree.

Fortunately there is a solid nucleus of good people who are keeping this train on the rails, who don't make the news or go viral on the internet.
 
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par13del
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 1:01 pm

Personally I do not think that question stands alone, its mirror image is always there, whats the issue with government spending.
If governments could only spend what they receive in taxes no one would have a problem with paying taxes, because the people would actually have some control and be able to see how their money is spent.
Anyone really know what their national government budget is, how it is spent and where the waste goes, the entire world today is deep in debt yet every school teaches its young to live within their means and only take on debt as a last resort.

A key being touted to solve the worlds current crisis is for more taxes, as in the people paying more, one can debate whether it is the rich needing to pay more or everyone else, but the solution is for more tax income. The poor have never avoided taxes or their consequences, so in the long run, the increased tax revenue will come from increased government spending on the non-rich, the circle continues. One day someone will look at spending from governments, to business to the man in the street, somehow we tend to loose what we learned in school.
 
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Dreadnought
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 1:13 pm

Oh, boy, here we go.

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
Are people love for money deeper than paying back society and assisting the future generation?
Quoting Mir (Reply 1):
There are people who couldn't care less about the future of the country if it would save them a few dollars, yes.
Quoting SmittyOne (Reply 2):
I think the simple answer to many questions along the line of "Why do people do x,y or z in the US" is that some people just suck.

First of all, the initial post mentions people giving up their US citizenship. The people who are doing that for tax purposes are those who A) have dual citizenship, and B) live in another country. They are already paying taxes in the country where they live. What ticks people off is the fact that the US insists that you continue to pay US taxes even though you don't live in the US. The extra-territorial reach of the US tax system is unique among industrialized countries - the only other country I know that does the same was Qaddafi-era Libya, and I have no idea if they still do it.

Taxes should be limited territorially, and should be independent of citizenship. If you live in the US, whatever citizenship you have, you pay US taxes. If you live in France, whatever citizenship you have, you pay French taxes.

Secondly, an important factor is the subjective feeling of whether your taxes are being properly spent. Taxes in Germany or Switzerland are, on average, higher than in the US, but they are much more organized - you get less of a feeling that much of your money is going to buy votes and political favors, which is definitely the case in the US right now. Just the other day my wife got a phone call from the local HHS office. They were asking if anyone in the household would be interested in receiving government benefits, and ran down a list of all the things that would make one eligible. There were a lot. But that is the kind of thing that really irritates a taxpayer like me. The government is actively seeking out people to give money away, presumably to get people hooked, and when elections come around, they hope that people will vote for the party that will keep the gravy train rolling, instead of the party that says that we need to get entitlements under control.

Imagine this: What would federal spending be like if you eliminated from the entitlement roles everyone who really does not need the money - they have other sources of income, or are able-bodied and could get a job but government entitlements pay better. How much would be saved? $100 billion? A trillion?
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QFA380
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 1:20 pm

Same reason many parents don't enjoy paying for ungrateful, lying, belligerent children who think they know best. It's not that they hate it prima facie, its that given a set of circumstances it is not something they want to do.

People like to be able to see what happens with their taxes, they like to see shiny new roads and infrastructure, they like to see low crime and low poverty, they like to have convenient and simple government services such as car registration, they like to not have to spend insane amounts of money and time to sort out their tax every year.

When government turns around and starts lying and treating its citizens like serfs is it not unreasonable for the citizenry to feel some resent towards government? When they cannot see their taxes going to good with with teen pregnancy, poverty, crime sky high, they can't see any of the trillions spent on wars except for the graves and news stories about their countrymen who've come home in body bags. When government is impossible to deal with how than they be expected to gleefully hand over their hard earned money?

And despite the shambles government is in, people know that the government is up to its eyeballs in debt with nothing to show for it, further enslaving their descendants in government servitude.

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
After reading much about US citizens renouncing their citizenship to avoid paying US tax abroad,

You've answered your own question. If they're living overseas how can they enjoy:

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
health care, social security, education food stamps, highways and transportation, public defenders to defend you, the FAA, police, fire and ambulance services

If you should pay tax to enjoy these services, then if you are not enjoying these services, you should not pay taxes.
 
seb146
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 2:40 pm

Quoting Mir (Reply 1):
I don't really know what people in the US are complaining about

There is a small and vocal per centage that believes the only reason we pay taxes is to give to so-called "welfare queens" who, apparently all purchase brand new Escalades and all own 52" flat screen TVs and all play the biggest X-Box/PS3/Wii and all the games. While there are a few like that, there are many, many more who use food stamps and Medicade just to survive.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
What would federal spending be like if you eliminated from the entitlement roles everyone who really does not need the money - they have other sources of income, or are able-bodied and could get a job but government entitlements pay better. How much would be saved? $100 billion? A trillion?

Probably about $2 million. Until they start to get sick again because they can not afford doctor visits and medications because they have been denied for private insurance because of "pre-existing conditions."

Where in the Bible did Jesus ask Lazarus for his private medical insurance? The right claims to be the party of Jesus, so I have to ask. Also, how much profit did Jesus make when He fed the masses and preached the beattitudes?
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BMI727
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 3:11 pm

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
What's your problem with paying tax?

I like money and I like to make sure that as much of my money stays exactly that: mine.

Sure taxes are used for some necessary and useful things to me like defense, police, infrastructure (within reason) and maintaining a legal system. But a lot is thrown away on welfare, flying empty planes around, subsidizing video game companies. As far as I'm concerned that's pure waste. None of that spending helps me and I could just as easily squander it on my own, by say, buying WNBA tickets, investing in an airline, or flushing cash down the toilet.

Quoting par13del (Reply 3):
The poor have never avoided taxes

...they never had to.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
What ticks people off is the fact that the US insists that you continue to pay US taxes even though you don't live in the US. The extra-territorial reach of the US tax system is unique among industrialized countries - the only other country I know that does the same was Qaddafi-era Libya, and I have no idea if they still do it.

Taxes should be limited territorially, and should be independent of citizenship. If you live in the US, whatever citizenship you have, you pay US taxes.

   And then you get into the bullying of foreign banks.
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Mir
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 3:21 pm

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
What ticks people off is the fact that the US insists that you continue to pay US taxes even though you don't live in the US.

And that's fair - the US expat tax policy is idiotic, and needs to be changed.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
If you live in the US, whatever citizenship you have, you pay US taxes. If you live in France, whatever citizenship you have, you pay French taxes.

I'd agree, with the exception that if you're living in France as a US citizen but making money in the US, that money (and only that money) should be taxed at US rates.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 6):
Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
What would federal spending be like if you eliminated from the entitlement roles everyone who really does not need the money - they have other sources of income, or are able-bodied and could get a job but government entitlements pay better. How much would be saved? $100 billion? A trillion?

Probably about $2 million.

Actually, if we started denying Medicare and Social Security to those who were clearly able to cover themselves in their old age, we could save quite a bit. But I'm pretty sure that would never fly politically.

-Mir
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EA CO AS
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 3:44 pm

I don't have an issue with paying taxes. I have an issue with the perception of others that somehow, I don't pay enough. Particularly when they're not paying as much as I already am.
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Pyrex
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 3:56 pm

Why was I not surprised to see the age bracket of the OP?

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
What's your problem with paying tax?
Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
avoid paying US tax abroad

Well lookie here, seems like you just answered your own question, doesn't it?

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
I think that paying tax is a form of paying it forward for the future generation

I think it is a way to subsidize public employees who couldn't get a private sector job if it bit them in the behind. Coming from a country that is now in shambles because decades of government largesse instituted the mentality that the government should provide for everything and people who take risks in the private sector are suckers who should be fleeced out of everything they have, I should know.
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LAXintl
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 4:18 pm

Here is a problem -- Almost 50% of Americans don't end up paying any Federal Income Tax - up from 12% in 1970s.


So before continuing to chase after the 50% that do pay, and demonizing those that have done well for themselves, how about creating a system where everyone must pay something.

Imo - as a small business owner my tax burden and complexity is getting beyond ridiculous - with multiple levels of local, state and federal taxes. Its simply too easy for every entity involved to raise their rates a few percentage, and before you know it, your taxes have been bumped up 25%, to the point where its almost not worth doing more business, or hiring any added help.
Matter of fact the help I've needed in recent times is not to run the business and generate income, its to help manage and document the complex myriad levels of regulations to keep my nose clean.
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Dreadnought
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 4:24 pm

Quoting seb146 (Reply 6):
Probably about $2 million. Until they start to get sick again because they can not afford doctor visits and medications because they have been denied for private insurance because of "pre-existing conditions."
Quote:
As of early 2011, 15% of people lived in a household that received food stamps, 26% had someone enrolled in Medicaid and 2% had a member receiving unemployment benefits. Families doubling up to save money or pool expenses also is likely leading to more multigenerational households. But even without the effects of the recession, there would be a larger reliance on government.

The Census data show that 16% of the population lives in a household where at least one member receives Social Security and 15% receive or live with someone who gets Medicare. There is likely a lot of overlap, since Social Security and Medicare tend to go hand in hand, but those percentages also are likely to increase as the Baby Boom generation ages.
http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2012/...ves-in-household-getting-benefits/

I personally know a lawyer who made a crapload of money, drove nothing but Cadillacs and lived an a very upscale neighborhood in north Dallas. His house was filled with artwork he collected over the years. But when he got cancer and spent his last 6 months in the hospital, Medicaid ended up paying 100% of his bill, because he never bought insurance.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 6):
Where in the Bible did Jesus ask Lazarus for his private medical insurance? The right claims to be the party of Jesus, so I have to ask. Also, how much profit did Jesus make when He fed the masses and preached the beattitudes?

Where did Jesus demand from Lazarus' neighbors that they should pay for Lazarus' care, and be subject to imprisonment if they did not? Christ taught that you should help of your own free will. Being forced to do so (and taxes are forced) has no meaning in terms of a virtuous act.

Quoting Mir (Reply 8):
I'd agree, with the exception that if you're living in France as a US citizen but making money in the US, that money (and only that money) should be taxed at US rates.

Agree absolutely. Tax territoriality means taxing revenue where it occurs.

Quoting Mir (Reply 8):
Actually, if we started denying Medicare and Social Security to those who were clearly able to cover themselves in their old age, we could save quite a bit. But I'm pretty sure that would never fly politically.

It's not that they should get nothing, but it should basically be enough to keep you off the streets, and little more. I agree that the social security payroll tax limit at $105K or whatever it is should be lifted, even eliminated, but the rate reduced.
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Superfly
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 5:04 pm

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
Are people love for money deeper than paying back society and assisting the future generation?


Future generations? That money is already gone. The US is now over $16TRILLION in debt and our current President is spending 8 times what they bring in from taxes. Also 50% do NOT pay taxes!
You talk a lot about "greed" when a lot of the anti-rich sentiment is motivated by ENVY.
Envy is just as bad, if not worse than greed.
Also much of our tax dollars is being wasted abroad which is why many people have a negative opinion of the United States.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
B) live in another country. They are already paying taxes in the country where they live.


  

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 4):
Taxes should be limited territorially, and should be independent of citizenship. If you live in the US, whatever citizenship you have, you pay US taxes. If you live in France, whatever citizenship you have, you pay French taxes.


  

Quoting QFA380 (Reply 5):
You've answered your own question. If they're living overseas how can they enjoy:


  

Quoting seb146 (Reply 6):
There is a small and vocal per centage that believes the only reason we pay taxes is to give to so-called "welfare queens" who, apparently all purchase brand new Escalades and all own 52" flat screen TVs and...


You have an incredible imagination but the person you speak of only has a 5 year cap on welfare. Getting knocked up by multiple man and collecting child support from multiple men has replaced welfare.
President Clinton passed welfare reform which ended lifelong welfare.
The welfare queens of today would be companies like General Electric which paid NO taxes and their CEO is Obama's jobs czar who exported thousands of jobs from the US to China and even got tax returns despite record profits. Same for Pepco Holdings, PG&E, Atmos Energy just to name a few.
There are a whole lot more companies that can be classified as "welfare queens".

Then of course there is all the government waste - most of which goes out as foreign aid to countries that don't even like us or even need the money.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 7):
And then you get into the bullying of foreign banks.


...and that really burns me up! Many countries already have bank privacy laws that forbids releasing private banking information.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 11):
Here is a problem -- Almost 50% of Americans don't end up paying any Federal Income Tax - up from 12% in 1970s.



If we just simply had a 10% flat-tax for everyone, this problem would be solved.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 12):
Where did Jesus demand from Lazarus' neighbors that they should pay for Lazarus' care, and be subject to imprisonment if they did not?


  
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babybus
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 5:16 pm

I resent paying tax.

Not only does the government take nearly 40% of my salary in various taxes, I also have to pay around 30% tax on most things I buy. Then the local council wants 10% of what I earn for their various taxes.

When I see all the people on the train everyday going to work, and think of the millions of people in the UK I wonder why any govenment needs that amount of tax? It's not like we see it being wisely spent.
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Flighty
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 5:24 pm

The issue is not paying tax. The issue is that people who earn a lot tend to be very analytical about their own earning vs. spending. "We" run a tight ship.

The government on the other hand... is a dysfunctional, corrupt lost cause. Philanthropy is one thing; outright destruction of human achievement is another thing. Our government primarily exists now to enrich government contractors and employees. The quarry is our children and today's working affluent. As somebody in the business world, I have some limited perspective on how, and why, this occurs. It does not make me want to essentially lose all my money so my (rich) neighbor can profit even more off the government's sclerotic hobbling. I honestly hope for a revolution. We *could* become more socialist than Sweden and still have money left over, *if* we shed this whale of corruption.

If not, I could easily see myself leaving. I am young enough. My family has not been in the USA forever and will not necessarily remain here forever.
 
vegetables2001
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 5:56 pm

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
I think that paying tax is a form of paying it forward for the future generation

This quote is so utterly ironic, in the EU and US the present tax payers are doing anything else BUT paying ANYTHING forward to the future generations. The entitlement culture that is so endemic in western citizens at present as going to burden future generations to a frightening extent.

It's equally ironic that the politicians on the left like Obama who wished people paid higher taxes are the ones most guilty of placing the burden on future generations.

I personally have no problems in paying tax at all for: foreign aid for 3rd world countries, people made redundant, the sick, the good education of the young, some form of armed service, pubic transport, public sanitation, etc.. etc.. etc..

What I have a problem with is paying taxes for:

Healthcare for people with chronic healthy lifestyles.
Funding generations and generations of welfare junkies.
Prestige obsolete military projects like Trident replacements
Funding pointless foreign wars fought so our idiot politicians can bum up whichever idiot is the POTUS ATM.
Funding foreign regimes that can afford nuclear weapons and space programs.
Bailing out failed banks.
Funding prestige sporting events.

Quoting seb146 (Reply 6):
Where in the Bible did Jesus ask Lazarus for his private medical insurance?

However if Lazarus was a breast cancer patient in the US (survival rate 85%) he'd have a much greater survival rate than the UK(74%)
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Dreadnought
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 6:17 pm

Quoting vegetables2001 (Reply 16):
Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
I think that paying tax is a form of paying it forward for the future generation

This quote is so utterly ironic, in the EU and US the present tax payers are doing anything else BUT paying ANYTHING forward to the future generations.

Ain't that the truth. How can Liberals get away with saying that they are investing in the future? Investing is what happens when you pay money now in order to get a benefit later. We are getting the benefits now (entitlements, government-funded businesses that are otherwise unsustainable etc), and telling our children and grandchildren to pay the bill. That's the complete opposite of investment.

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 10):
Why was I not surprised to see the age bracket of the OP?

LOL, I didn't notice that. Just goes to show what young people are learning these days.
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DeltaMD90
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 7:09 pm

I wouldn't have as much of a problem if the government didn't throw so much of my money away. It's ridiculous, I'd feel better burning the money than having it being wasted on some of the stuff the government spends money on
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vegetables2001
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 7:39 pm

This is pretty much the whole crux of the economic/politic divide: Should the state spend the money or should the individual? Debates over issues just fluff in the long run, this is by far the most important debate and I think the next few years will decide the future of the western world economically.

As I have never seen politicians or the state run anything well I'm afraid I have to go down on the individual side.

It just show what a bunch of political pygmies we have at the moment that they distract the population with issues such as gay marriage - makes me want to weep,
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Dreadnought
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:06 pm

Quoting vegetables2001 (Reply 19):
As I have never seen politicians or the state run anything well I'm afraid I have to go down on the individual side.
Forget dogs and cats - Spay and neuter your liberals.
 
Mir
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:29 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 11):
Here is a problem -- Almost 50% of Americans don't end up paying any Federal Income Tax - up from 12% in 1970s.


So before continuing to chase after the 50% that do pay, and demonizing those that have done well for themselves, how about creating a system where everyone must pay something.

Or how about we work on decreasing the income inequality so that the poor get richer and can start falling into higher tax brackets? That'll be far more productive long-term than just taxing the lower ends of the income scale more because it makes people feel better.

-Mir
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PPVRA
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:33 pm

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
What's your problem with paying tax?

Because it's taken by force. I loathe violence, it is the tool of brutes, not of the civilized.

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
I think that paying tax is a form of paying it forward for the future generation.

Right now, most governments are putting future generations at risk with the massive amounts of debt they are pilling up.

Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
If you make money in this country, or have benefited from what this country provides to allow you to make money (super fast internet to get what you need done, roads to get you to where you need to go, bank networks to get access to your money) then you should pay tax.

Government gets in the way of these things, it does not help their development.

[Edited 2012-05-27 16:34:53]
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Mir
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:43 pm

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 22):
I loathe violence, it is the tool of brutes, not of the civilized.

Getting things without paying for them is hardly civilized either.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
PPVRA
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:45 pm

Quoting Mir (Reply 23):
Getting things without paying for them is hardly civilized either.

I am not the one who has a problem with that statement. . . unless it's a gift, then I have no problem with it.

[Edited 2012-05-27 16:45:36]
"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
 
LAXintl
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:55 pm

Quoting Mir (Reply 21):
Or how about we work on decreasing the income inequality so that the poor get richer and can start falling into higher tax brackets? That'll be far more productive long-term than just taxing the lower ends of the income scale more because it makes people feel better.

Sure let people go out get educated, work hard, invent things, and strike it rich. I'm all for that.

However the government mandated Robin Hood like income redistribution is absolutely wrong imo. Its as if we wish to punish people for being smart, accomplished, and having done well at the end of the day.

If anything, the ones that need the kick in the rear are those millions that feel they are entitled to a government mandated cruch, and the government will always be there to catch them regardless of what they give back.

As we know, life is tough - either you swim, or you sink. But don't get mad at those that learned how to swim....

Yes its philosophical debate at the end of the day, but for me, the more government leaves the country alone, and the less social engineering it tries to practice, the better.
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Dreadnought
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Sun May 27, 2012 11:55 pm

Quoting Mir (Reply 21):
Or how about we work on decreasing the income inequality so that the poor get richer and can start falling into higher tax brackets?

I put it to you that that is the best argument for government to butt out.

Here is a map of the GINI index, which is an indicator of the inequality among values of levels of income.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c5/GINIretouchedcolors.png/800px-GINIretouchedcolors.png

I suggest to you that the countries with the most regulations on industry are those that have the worst GINI scores. I'm not talking about the stringency of those regulations or the taxation levels - I'm talking about complexity. In many countries, like in Scandinavia, taxes might be high and regulations are very strict, but they are relatively simple - enough so that the average entrepreneur can understand them within the space of a few pages. In the US, virtually every industry is governed by so many regulations that you need lawyers to understand the critical ones (and hope the others don't bite you in the ass). I think the complexity of regulations is just as much, and perhaps much more of a cause of income inequality.

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 22):
Quoting AA7295 (Thread starter):
If you make money in this country, or have benefited from what this country provides to allow you to make money (super fast internet to get what you need done, roads to get you to where you need to go, bank networks to get access to your money) then you should pay tax.

Government gets in the way of these things, it does not help their development.

That's a bit harsh. Roads would not be built without governments, for example. But generally speaking they do tend to get in the way more often than not.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 12:36 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 23):
Getting things without paying for them is hardly civilized either.

So I take it that we should end all income redistribution-style entitlements? I'm surprised you think so.

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StarAC17
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 1:09 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 8):
Actually, if we started denying Medicare and Social Security to those who were clearly able to cover themselves in their old age, we could save quite a bit. But I'm pretty sure that would never fly politically.

While that sounds great in theory then the taxes that an individual paid into Medicare and Social security should be refunded to an individual who is denied a government service because of too many means. You paid in to something and you should get the benefits and if you don't want them then that should be your choice and the government shouldn't cut you off because you happen to be rich.

Quoting Mir (Reply 21):
Or how about we work on decreasing the income inequality so that the poor get richer and can start falling into higher tax brackets? That'll be far more productive long-term than just taxing the lower ends of the income scale more because it makes people feel better.

That's the problem is that these people do not earn enough to get into the federal tax brackets, however these same people will pay state and local taxes regardless about how much they pay federally. So they aren't paying 0% across the board. Which begs the question why do most US posters here complain about the feds only, I here very little about how a state might be stuffing up more than the feds do.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 1:29 am

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 24):
I am not the one who has a problem with that statement. . .

Really? Because without taxes, government services could not effectively be paid for.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 25):
However the government mandated Robin Hood like income redistribution is absolutely wrong imo. Its as if we wish to punish people for being smart, accomplished, and having done well at the end of the day.

What punishment? For all the talk about raising taxes on the wealthy, it hasn't passed yet. Those taxes are still lower than they were in 2000. And despite that, income inequality has increased since 2000. So while I agree that the wealthy are shouldering more of the tax burden, it has nothing to do with some new way of "punishing" them for being wealthy. Rather, it's merely a result of the way that the economy has progressed over the last decade or so.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 26):
I suggest to you that the countries with the most regulations on industry are those that have the worst GINI scores. I'm not talking about the stringency of those regulations or the taxation levels - I'm talking about complexity.

I'd say that loopholes in the regulations inserted by certain well-connected businesses do tend to increase inequality, yes. But it is worth noting that the traditionally "big government" nations of Europe still manage to have less inequality (and, if I'm not mistaken, they have a more equally distributed tax burden).

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 28):
While that sounds great in theory then the taxes that an individual paid into Medicare and Social security should be refunded to an individual who is denied a government service because of too many means. You paid in to something and you should get the benefits and if you don't want them then that should be your choice and the government shouldn't cut you off because you happen to be rich.

While that sounds great in theory, you've got a whole generation of people paying into Medicare and Social Security who are unlikely to see the benefits of those programs. Why should they be the only ones not to get their money back?

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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 1:50 am

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 28):
So they aren't paying 0% across the board. Which begs the question why do most US posters here complain about the feds only, I here very little about how a state might be stuffing up more than the feds do.

I guess you have not been paying much attention to the states, a fair number of them have balanced budget amendments, additionally, when their tax revenue goes down unlike the Federal government they have to cut services.

Do states have waste, yes they do, but when they run deficits spending gets cut and services decrease and in some cases suffer, unlike the Feds when they run deficits they simply borrow and tax more, something which the states have much difficulty doing, so in an non-factual way, the people have more control over the state than they have over the feds.
This principle also control city budgets within the states, they are mostly responsible for the day to day government services like police, fire, sanitation etc. and also have the power to tax residents.

I guess we need governments to go into business, after all, most governments who are now complaining about lower revenue get all their existing funds from taxes, so maybe they should start investing in hotels, industry and actually doing some revenue generation of their own to assist their tax payors. The feds did run a freight train company profitably for a few years, so there is some hope.
 
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 1:53 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 29):
I'd say that loopholes in the regulations inserted by certain well-connected businesses do tend to increase inequality, yes. But it is worth noting that the traditionally "big government" nations of Europe still manage to have less inequality (and, if I'm not mistaken, they have a more equally distributed tax burden).

Loopholes exist for a reason and they are put there by lobbyists for the people and corporations that use them. The reason that the US tax system isn't simpler is because many stakeholders have an interest in it being complicated because some do benefit from it.

Quoting Mir (Reply 29):
While that sounds great in theory, you've got a whole generation of people paying into Medicare and Social Security who are unlikely to see the benefits of those programs. Why should they be the only ones not to get their money back?

Who isn't or won't get access to it??
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 1:58 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 29):
I'd say that loopholes in the regulations inserted by certain well-connected businesses do tend to increase inequality, yes.

Yes, and it is the job of government officials (elected or not) to say no. If a law applies to one industry or company, it should apply for all.

I remember reading through one of Congress's bills a couple of years ago (it could have been the Porkulus Bill, but I can't remember), and one section described a new regulation that would apply to all businesses, except for those incorporated on June 18th 1956 in Delaware (I made up the date, but that's exactly how it was written). A little study discovered that on that date and place one of the major companies in the industry was incorporated. A clear case of corruption.

Quoting Mir (Reply 29):
But it is worth noting that the traditionally "big government" nations of Europe still manage to have less inequality (and, if I'm not mistaken, they have a more equally distributed tax burden).

You will also note that those countries with better GINI indexes are those that have less progressive tax systems than the US. We have taken the progressive tax scale to absurd lengths. Go to Germany or France - you start paying very significant taxes as soon as you make more than around $10K.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 2:09 am

Generally my issues are:
1.) Not everyone pays tax.

2.) Those that pay the most think it is "not fair". Those that don't pay any think it is OK.

3.) When the government has excess taxes recipients they don;t use it to pay down.

4.) Both major parties play games with the money, each spending on their pet constituent groups with no concern for the nation and it economic future (beyond blaming problems on their opponents).

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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 2:11 am

Quoting tugger (Reply 33):
4.) Both major parties play games with the money, each spending on their pet constituent groups with no concern for the nation and it economic future (beyond blaming problems on their opponents).

        
Couldn't have said it any better. Few people point out that both sides are playing this game
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 2:25 am

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 34):
Couldn't have said it any better. Few people point out that both sides are playing this game


Which is how the Tea Party got started and why they managed to boot out some long-standing GOP stalwarts known to play such games, such as Dick Luger. It's got to stop.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 2:29 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 32):
You will also note that those countries with better GINI indexes are those that have less progressive tax systems than the US. We have taken the progressive tax scale to absurd lengths. Go to Germany or France - you start paying very significant taxes as soon as you make more than around $10K.

You likely do in the US as well but it will go to your municipality or your state, its not going to the feds.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 32):
Yes, and it is the job of government officials (elected or not) to say no. If a law applies to one industry or company, it should apply for all.

If a congressman says no, then the company wanting the loophole puts up a candidate that will keep it in place and with citizens united can put up unlimited sums of money to pretty much ensure that that person likely will get tossed from office.

There are billionaires out there like Sheldon Adelson who may put up up to $100 million to defeat Obama (I'm sure you love this) but by them doing this they will own Mitt Romney. If he doesn't co-operate with what they want then their money will go elsewhere in 2016.

This is the biggest problem with US politics and both sides are guilty of it and unless this is fixed nothing will change.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 2:48 am

Quoting par13del (Reply 30):
I guess you have not been paying much attention to the states, a fair number of them have balanced budget amendments, additionally, when their tax revenue goes down unlike the Federal government they have to cut services.

I know this but just because you have a BBA doesn't make you efficient but it is a good starting point, sometimes a deficit makes sense. The biggest problem in the US is the current deficit is too high relative to the growth rate (10% of GDP as opposed to about 2-3% growth)

The biggest issue with the US government is that they ran them when the economy is good and now everyone is seeing this as an issue when ideally they are more necessary to stimulate the economy and even Mitt Romney is saying this. You have go from the current situation and now take $1.5 trillion (the approx. annual deficit) out of the US economy quickly you kill the growth and then the government will have to cut more to match the upcoming revenue downfall.

If the US behaved like its northern neighbours who ran surpluses for about 10 years prior to the GFC a few years in the red is not going to create a fiscal panic.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 2:59 am

I do not have a problem paying taxes if the government was using out taxpayer dollars effectively. There is SO much waste that is my problem.. Also even though only 1% of the budget goes to foreign aid I have a problem with this too. There is no accountability for any of the money we provide... In the latest incident of the doctor imprisoned in Pakastan for helping us with Bin Laden he was sentenced to 33+ yrs. Well our congress want to "punish" Pakastan one million for every yr the doctor is imprisoned...Are you kidding me?...We give this country BILLIONS...33 million is laughable. I wouldnt blame anyone for not cooperating with us in the future. I know this is off topic. But again our country WASTES taxpayer money that is the reason I hate paying taxes.

[Edited 2012-05-27 20:00:07]
 
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 4:54 am

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 36):
There are billionaires out there like Sheldon Adelson who may put up up to $100 million to defeat Obama

What is the total value of all the free airtime and media exposure Obama gets from a complicit media?
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 5:28 am

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
What is the total value of all the free airtime and media exposure Obama gets from a complicit media?

There is no "complicit media". There is only "free media". Unless you feel there should be a "fairness doctrine" imposed? You do realize that the President, the office of the President, gets more news reported about it just because it is what it is don't you? And it's not like all the news reported about President Obama is favorable. It's not.

The simple fact is the media is BIG business, huge business, with well paid executive staff and owners that cover the entire political spectrum. The only thing the media wants to do is sell ad time and sell its story. Which ever party puts up intriguing and exciting candidates, they will write about them.

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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 6:19 am

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
What is the total value of all the free airtime and media exposure Obama gets from a complicit media?

How much? You tell us. You must know, right? Why else would you make a statement like this if you do not. So .. please.. tell us..
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StarAC17
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 8:23 am

Quoting Pyrex (Reply 39):
What is the total value of all the free airtime and media exposure Obama gets from a complicit media?

I could say the same about the berating the same man receives on AM radio??

I'm sure you have a real problem with that  
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ikramerica
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 8:23 am

Simple. Study the givernment pension system in the state of California and you will see why we resent it here. The state is now looking to create a new tax bracket to pay 13%, and what do we get in return? Reduced DMV hours, building permit reviews that take months up to 2 years, real estate transfer taxes of 5-10 percent, no new freeways in years, higher fees and fines for everything, doubled parking meter rates. All so a boatload of middle management state workers can take early retirement w pensions at 150-200% of base pay, for life, because the rules they paid politicians to write allow it. Oh, and now we get a regerimandered state and a new primary system that all but ensures the incumbent wins in November. And on the federal level, there may never be a competitive Senate race again because of this new system. The exact House of Lords type system the constitution was written to avoid.

As for the buffet rule, it's hypocritical of the government to encourage investment in tax free government bonds then to turn around and chastise the wealthy for doing so. These evil rich are helping to pay for the administration's largesse...

As for buffet himself, he underpays himself as head of Berkshire in order to avoid taxes. He should be investigated and jailed for this, not held up as a hero. he should either take a salary commensurate with his position, or $1. Otherwise he has no high ground to stand on.
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Mon May 28, 2012 11:42 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 11):
Here is a problem -- Almost 50% of Americans don't end up paying any Federal Income Tax - up from 12% in 1970s.

Here's the real problem. The average CEO in the 1970's made about 40x what the average worker did. Today, the average CEO makes about 300x what the average worker does. As long as we have such massive wage inequality, our tax system will be grossly inequal as well.

Quoting StarAC17 (Reply 28):
While that sounds great in theory then the taxes that an individual paid into Medicare and Social security should be refunded to an individual who is denied a government service because of too many means.

No. Social Security is insurance. It should only pay out if needed. Your car insurance only pays out if there is an accident. If you have no accidents, they pay you nothing even though you may have given them thousands.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 32):
Yes, and it is the job of government officials (elected or not) to say no. If a law applies to one industry or company, it should apply for all.

Sorry, but in a capitalist world, those with the money make the rules. It was true in the time of our Founding Fathers and even more so now.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 26):
I suggest to you that the countries with the most regulations on industry are those that have the worst GINI scores.

I give you credit, you are desperate to create an explanation for why all the socialist, left-leaning countries have the least income inequality. Let me suggest to you something else, those countries with the worst inequality typically have corrupt, inept governments that provide little in meaningful services (education, healthcare) and whose government is largely controlled by a small group of super wealthy people.

Quoting ikramerica (Reply 43):
As for buffet himself, he underpays himself as head of Berkshire in order to avoid taxes. He should be investigated and jailed for this, not held up as a hero.

You going to jail all the other CEO's who do (or have done this) in the past...including guys like Mitt Romney!!
 
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Tue May 29, 2012 12:19 am

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 44):
Sorry, but in a capitalist world, those with the money make the rules. It was true in the time of our Founding Fathers and even more so now.

You suggest that non-capitalist societies do not suffer from the same problem. As I have worked extensively in communist countries such as Vietnam, and Belarus, and many more that are more socialist than communist, I can assure you that just the opposite is the case. Corruption can exist no matter what the economic system is in place.

The problem is much more a function of how much power you allow government officials to have. The more power they have, the more incentives there will be to engage in corruption.

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 44):
I give you credit, you are desperate to create an explanation for why all the socialist, left-leaning countries have the least income inequality.

And I notice that you refuse to discuss the fact that such countries have a much less progressive tax system than the US, or the specifics of their regulatory environment.

http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/59/25/35372059.pdf

Quote:
But a new study on inequality by researchers at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris reveals that when it comes to household taxes (income taxes and employee social security contributions) the U.S. "has the most progressive tax system and collects the largest share of taxes from the richest 10% of the population." As Column 1 in the table below shows, the U.S. tax system is far more progressive—meaning pro-poor—than similar systems in countries most Americans identify with high taxes, such as France and Sweden.

Even after accounting for the fact that the top 10 percent of households in the U.S. have one of the highest shares of market income among OECD nations, our tax system is second only to Ireland in terms of its progressivity for households.
http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/23856.html

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 44):
Let me suggest to you something else, those countries with the worst inequality typically have corrupt, inept governments that provide little in meaningful services (education, healthcare) and whose government is largely controlled by a small group of super wealthy people.

Precisely. So why are so many people wanting to give them more power, more authority, and more money? It seems to me the solution would be to starve the beast.

[Edited 2012-05-28 17:23:33]
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Flighty
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Tue May 29, 2012 1:24 am

Quoting ikramerica (Reply 43):
All so a boatload of middle management state workers can take early retirement w pensions at 150-200% of base pay, for life, because the rules they paid politicians to write allow it.

That kind of thing makes me, well, not homicidal, but almost. It's absolute enslavement. It is a civil rights issue. My kids should not be indebted to these slobs whose cronies legislated a huge benefit for them, payable by my child. Get your affluent family's damn hands off my child's money. The idea that these giant self righteous asses are defeating my team on the basis of mathematics and actuarial science makes me ill. I refuse to lose that game. So, I don't live in California.
 
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Tue May 29, 2012 1:33 am

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 44):
Here's the real problem. The average CEO in the 1970's made about 40x what the average worker did. Today, the average CEO makes about 300x what the average worker does. As long as we have such massive wage inequality, our tax system will be grossly inequal as well.

Thats not a problem. Its simply supply vs demand in a free market.

Each job in the free market has a value. There are millions upon millions that can make subways sandwiches, be the telephone customer service agent, or restaurant waiter, but there are very few that can be the brain surgeon, entrepreneur, music star, professional athlete, or Fortune 500 CEO.

In otherwords, society is a pyramid, and there are very few slots at the top, but those that reach it are handsomely rewarded by society. Imo kudos to them.
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Mir
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Tue May 29, 2012 1:47 am

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 45):
So why are so many people wanting to give them more power, more authority, and more money? It seems to me the solution would be to starve the beast.

Do Scandinavian governments have less power, less authority and less money? Yet you held them up earlier as examples of how to do it better.

-Mir
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RE: What's Your Issue With Paying Tax?

Tue May 29, 2012 2:03 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 48):
Do Scandinavian governments have less power, less authority and less money? Yet you held them up earlier as examples of how to do it better.

Because for some reason - take your pick - smaller country, older more established culture, better natural organization, whatever, Scandenavians seems to be less corrupt, in terms of politicians buying/selling favors and votes.

That is to say that high taxes and strong centralized government seems to work in some countries, but I don't think it will ever work satisfactorily in the US. The alternative which Democrats refuse to look at is allowing States to take on such strong powers, such as healthcare, old-age pensions, unemployment benefits etc, getting it out of the federal level. Let the states decide what they want to do (and each state is about as big as a European country). Federal spending would be cut by well over 50%. State taxes of course would have to go up, but then competition comes into play, where the best-run states will attract the best people and industries.
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