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beachbumbabs
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beachbumbabs
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May 31st, 2018 at 6:48:42 PM permalink
Quote: Paradigm

I am not sure I agree with this statement. Spending on items for the collective good doesn't feel like a redistribution of wealth. As an example, infrastructure spending to ensure we have public roads for everyone to use isn't wealth redistribution in my opinion. Neither is spending on national defense. In my book, redistribution of wealth is limited taking tax dollars collected from many and spending it on individuals normally through entitlement programs. But I am open for a discussion on why you believe all government spending is wealth redistribution. How do you get to that definition for government dollars spent on common benefit types of items?



I think it can be argued that imfrastructure spending (and all government spending) is a redistribution of wealth.

All road paving benefits all the public, for example, but not equally. It benefits locals much more than itinerants, and much much more than non-locals who don't travel. It benefits drivers more than non-drivers. It benefits those who run a business that depends on many people accessing their service via those roads much more than someone who simply lives in the area.

But everybody pays the same surcharge via a gas tax to maintain some or all of those roads. Those who own property pay a mill rate property tax that usually includes some road construction and maintenance. Commercial licenses for trucks and drivers often include a surcharge that helps pay for their increased use of those roads. Commercial business licenses often include assessments for the roads to their places.

Even though the taxes funding the roads are piecemealed, there's no way that some don't pay more than their fair share, and some are paying less. So wealth redistribution is in effect, because the roads are getting built, for our mutual benefit, despite any inequity in paying for them . And this example is representative enough of many, if not most, government programs.

Welfare simply removes some of the masking that goes on in government contracting and administration of other programs. You would not BELIEVE the amount of taxes wasted on overhead and profits to for-profit contractors to the government. THAT'S the shell game they're hiding when they deflect the conversation to the welfare state.


And, considering 99% of the actual welfare benefit is immediately spent on something, it's not like that money is gone from the economy of taxpayers. It's supporting the grocery stores, public transportation, gas taxes, property investors, a thousand other things. So in some ways, the person paying those taxes is getting at least some of that money back in revenue if they're providing any service or good to a basic subsistence spender.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
billryan
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May 31st, 2018 at 11:10:47 PM permalink
Is the idea to give every citizen or resident a basic living allowance or only the lowest rung on the economic ladder?
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction is supposed to make sense.
Rigondeaux
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May 31st, 2018 at 11:48:59 PM permalink
I'm unsure about it for many reasons, but lean to yes.

If job loss continues, something similar will be needed.

But i sometimes wonder if/how much an economy can run on BS. Nail salons, fantasy sports, phone games, sports memorabilia, vintage clothing... All frivolous things that contribute nothing to our sustenance. But all billion dollar industries.

Could our frivolous secter just keep expanding as our "real jobs" are replaced?

Anyway, another expence we could cut would be military spending. The military is effectively wellfare for a lot of people. We know there are way too many bases, but every senator and congressman will fight to the death to keep their bases open.

Now aimless 18 year olds won't have to join up.

Quote: Romes

This would never work because as soon as everyone in the country received an extra $1500 per month, the base cost of living everywhere would just go up another $1500 per month. It's the same argument with wanting to give fast food employees $15/hour... then the prices would just go up and the owners would automate to get rid of the employees. There's just no point. Why not just give everyone $100 million? Because then we would be Zimbabwe and have a 100 trillion dollar bill that you could use to buy a loaf of bread.

's...



All of this is objectively and deeply wrong. It's amazing that someone so smart could believe this.
Rigondeaux
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May 31st, 2018 at 11:54:39 PM permalink
An acquaintance of mine prefers massive workfare. But he is creative about it.

For example, you pay people to take regular classes on healthy cooking. They prepare and bring home food for their families.

Eventually, society saves on healthcare costs. Prison and LEO costs. People are smarter, more energetic and stable, etc.
AZDuffman
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June 1st, 2018 at 3:42:58 AM permalink
Quote: billryan

Is the idea to give every citizen or resident a basic living allowance or only the lowest rung on the economic ladder?



Every adult, hence "universal." I would assume incarcerated folks would not get it.

It is just an idea at the moment, so if it ever happened (God help us if it does) expect tinkering.
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troopscott
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Thanks for this post from:
RS
June 1st, 2018 at 5:14:06 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I am open to learning more about it, but with what little I know, I strongly support it, largely to get rid of other welfare programs and give everyone an incentive to work.

Out of college I was a claims adjuster for Social Security and it was an enormous amount of work to process a disability case through the system. It took at least six months and chock full bad of decisions both ways -- denying the truly disabled and awarding people faking a disability, because they didn't want to work. Once people are on, there are rules to allow a return to work without benefits being cut -- temporarily. Once the work has lasted more than x months (and I forget what x is) you are deemed well enough to work and your benefits, as well as medicare, end. Many people don't try to return to work because they would lose medicare, but that is getting off on a tangent.

I'm sure it would be enormously expensive at first glance but the cost could be recouped by the elimination of every welfare program as well as increase in taxes, such that mid-income people would come out basically even between the UBI and the tax increase.



You cant keep taxing the rich period. If you want more taxes eliminate the income tax and go to a fixed sales tax of 20% and let everyone have some skin in the game
wellwellwell
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June 1st, 2018 at 5:30:19 AM permalink
Quote: troopscott

You cant keep taxing the rich period. If you want more taxes eliminate the income tax and go to a fixed sales tax of 20% and let everyone have some skin in the game


No thank you to a national sales tax.
After only a few short years the lefties will be dragging the income tax back out and then we will have both to pay. Look at Europe.
TumblingBones
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June 1st, 2018 at 7:05:15 AM permalink
Quote: troopscott

You cant keep taxing the rich period. If you want more taxes eliminate the income tax and go to a fixed sales tax of 20% and let everyone have some skin in the game


One idea I've heard was to impose a "robot tax" on the companies. Call me cynical but even if it was the right thing to do and even if the politicians agreed to do it, it would end up being the most complicated tax law in history. How do you define what is, or is not, a "robot"? A self-driving car that puts taxi drivers out of work is an obvious candidate. What about the so-called "robotic surgery" devices? From a Comp Sci POV they are not true robots (no autonomous capability) and don't put doctors out of work. And what about software like QuickBooks and Turbo Tax that has probably put thousands of accountants out of work? Would that get taxed somehow?

p.s. kudos to AZ for starting this thread.
My goal of being well informed conflicts with my goal of remaining sane.
gamerfreak
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June 1st, 2018 at 7:41:27 AM permalink
Quote: TumblingBones

One idea I've heard was to impose a "robot tax" on the companies. Call me cynical but even if it was the right thing to do and even if the politicians agreed to do it, it would end up being the most complicated tax law in history. How do you define what is, or is not, a "robot"? A self-driving car that puts taxi drivers out of work is an obvious candidate. What about the so-called "robotic surgery" devices? From a Comp Sci POV they are not true robots (no autonomous capability) and don't put doctors out of work. And what about software like QuickBooks and Turbo Tax that has probably put thousands of accountants out of work? Would that get taxed somehow?

p.s. kudos to AZ for starting this thread.



Bill Gates says this will be needed:
http://fortune.com/2017/02/18/bill-gates-robot-taxes-automation/

I think there are some fairly clear boundaries between a tool and automation.

Computers/computer software like quick books are a tool that a human needs to operate to accomplish a task.

However, you can make a reasonable argument argument that 10 self check out kiosks replace 1 job (or something to that effect).
TumblingBones
TumblingBones
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June 1st, 2018 at 8:16:29 AM permalink
I don't think the tool vs automation divide is that clear. I used to pay 2 accountants: one for personal and one for my business. Now I pay zero and buy a new copy of Turbo Tax every year.
My goal of being well informed conflicts with my goal of remaining sane.

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