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10 votes (35.71%)
18 votes (64.28%)

28 members have voted

Nareed
Nareed
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July 20th, 2011 at 8:51:10 AM permalink
Quote: MathExtremist

Achieving and enforcing economic equality is not and never has been the goal, but one of the founding principles of the U.S. is to achieve social good ("promote the general Welfare" -- preamble, U.S. Constitution).



The preamble to the US Consitution states why a constitution is being set up, not what the purpose of government is. Nor is "to promote the general welfare" the only clause in the preamble. There's also "To form a more perfect Union" and "To secure the blessings of Liberty." Furhter, any actions by the government must conform to the limits, checks and balances set up in the Constitution.

And in the end, whether or not the government respects the law, it can't spend more money than it takes in forever. Sooner or later it runs out, and then there will be hell to pay.
Donald Trump is a fucking criminal
MathExtremist
MathExtremist
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July 20th, 2011 at 9:04:19 AM permalink
Quote: Nareed

And in the end, whether or not the government respects the law, it can't spend more money than it takes in forever. Sooner or later it runs out, and then there will be hell to pay.


Actually, it can. As long as revenue doesn't exceed debt service, running a modest deficit is a decent way to grow the economy. It's just borrowing against anticipation of future income (GDP growth and corresponding tax receipts growth, in the government's case), and it happens all the time from individuals to corporations to nations. The problem is that right now our deficit is highly immodest.

And if the recent, or some would argue current, housing crisis is any indication, if the U.S. does default on its mounting debts then there will indeed be hell to pay. But how? It's not like China can foreclose and take over ownership of California. Or can it?
"In my own case, when it seemed to me after a long illness that death was close at hand, I found no little solace in playing constantly at dice." -- Girolamo Cardano, 1563
thecesspit
thecesspit
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July 20th, 2011 at 9:45:56 AM permalink
A government can run a deficit of around 1-2% of GDP per year (on average) and it's national (total) debt will end up around 20-30% (depending on GDP growth, inflation, interest rates and other beasts).

Problem really seems to be that getting back to that small over spend is always "next years" problem.
"Then you can admire the real gambler, who has neither eaten, slept, thought nor lived, he has so smarted under the scourge of his martingale, so suffered on the rack of his desire for a coup at trente-et-quarante" - Honore de Balzac, 1829
thecesspit
thecesspit
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July 20th, 2011 at 10:01:42 AM permalink
I couldn't quickly find a list of absolute tax rates based on income for the UK, Canada and the US, but did find this info on wikipedia, which is good enough for me right now :

Tax rate for average wage earner (Single, no children) :

UK - 33.5%
US - 29.1%
Canada - 31.6%

Tax rate for average wage earner (married, two children) :

UK - 27.1%
US - 11.9%
Canada - 21.5%

Seems like a huge tax break for having spouse and children in the US.

These are based on not just income tax, but other forms of taxation like Employment Insurance, Canadian Pension Plan, National Insurance (UK) and so forth (I know my current absolute rate of federal income tax is around 15%).
"Then you can admire the real gambler, who has neither eaten, slept, thought nor lived, he has so smarted under the scourge of his martingale, so suffered on the rack of his desire for a coup at trente-et-quarante" - Honore de Balzac, 1829
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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July 20th, 2011 at 3:07:12 PM permalink
Quote: thecesspit

I couldn't quickly find a list of absolute tax rates based on income for the UK, Canada and the US, but did find this info on wikipedia, which is good enough for me right now :

Tax rate for average wage earner (Single, no children) :

UK - 33.5%
US - 29.1%
Canada - 31.6%

Tax rate for average wage earner (married, two children) :

UK - 27.1%
US - 11.9%
Canada - 21.5%

Seems like a huge tax break for having spouse and children in the US.



There are amazing tax breaks and credits for having kids in the US Tax Code. If you have 2 kids and make less than $40K it is almost impossible to pay any income tax. This may be a reason the USA is one of the only developed countries with a replacement birth rate.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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July 20th, 2011 at 3:12:53 PM permalink
Quote: SOOPOO

s2dbaker is stating some facts as they pertain to him. You can choose to interpret it as bragging but I look at it as informational. This is a gambling forum where every day people discuss their big wins, how much they bet on a hand, their bankrolls, etc... It brings together people from all levels of income, age, gender (and even transgender). Our beloved Wiz has blogged about hours of play at hundreds of dollars per hand. I take that as interesting and informative, not bragging.



I look at it as low-class bragging. Like the relative or friend you don't like who keeps reminding you of how much they make and the new cars and house they have. Liberals do this all the time saying, "hey, I make so much money I don't need a tax cut."

I guess he and guys like him who do not mind having their taxes raised had their money given to them. Because the wealthy people I know work hard 50+ hour weeks for every cent.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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July 20th, 2011 at 3:25:12 PM permalink
Quote: MathExtremist

Even the most ardent flat-taxers don't propose something as draconian as taxing someone's first dollar. That's just mean.



I don't see why. You have to pay sales tax no matter what you make. I see it as a way to make more careful voters. The next time a Hillary Clinton proposes a $5,000 grant for every newborn child for college more people will say, "WHOA! Who will pay for all that?!"

Quote:

You're confusing "fair" with "simple". It's simple to enact a flat tax. It's hardly fair, using any rational measurement of the value of money. If boymimbo's stats are correct, the top 1% in this country are paying 23.27% tax on income while the bottom 75% are paying 5.13% (or were, in 2008). Your proposal is equivalent to almost quadrupling the tax paid by the bottom 3/4 of taxpayers in order to reduce the tax on the top 1/100 by 3.27%.



To me "fair" is everyone giving the same %. You are stating that "fair" has to be engineered so it is some kind of equality of outcome. That gets us into all kinds of problems. The bottom 75% paying just 5.13% shows the problem. A dirty little secret is that if "revenue enhancements" are to have an effect on the deficit they will have to be broad-based. The top 1% doesn't have the cash to make the big difference. Take 50% of their income and the next Steve Jobs or Bill Gates will say, "Who is John Galt?" instead of keeping building strong businesses.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
s2dbaker
s2dbaker
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July 20th, 2011 at 3:26:30 PM permalink
Quote: AZDuffman

I guess he and guys like him who do not mind having their taxes raised had their money given to them. Because the wealthy people I know work hard 50+ hour weeks for every cent.

I can tell that you do a lot of guessing.
Someday, joor goin' to see the name of Googie Gomez in lights and joor goin' to say to joorself, "Was that her?" and then joor goin' to answer to joorself, "That was her!" But you know somethin' mister? I was always her yuss nobody knows it! - Googie Gomez
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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July 20th, 2011 at 3:29:48 PM permalink
Quote: s2dbaker

I can tell that you do a lot of guessing.



I can say for sure that people who don't care what things cost, including taxes, never worked for their money which is why they don't mind giving it away. People who work for their money protect it. Hence your statements about wanting higher taxes makes me guess you probably made your money easy or had it handed to you.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
thecesspit
thecesspit
Joined: Apr 19, 2010
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July 20th, 2011 at 3:33:16 PM permalink
Quote: AZDuffman

There are amazing tax breaks and credits for having kids in the US Tax Code. If you have 2 kids and make less than $40K it is almost impossible to pay any income tax. This may be a reason the USA is one of the only developed countries with a replacement birth rate.



This was part of my disbelief in the very low actual rates of taxation you guys have mentioned... however, there are various incentives for Child Credits which don't form part of the deductions directly, as far as I can tell, so I'd need to find a better calculator to compare with the US. I've found a US one that puts a $40,000 earning household at a total federal tax of $855 (~2.1%) if married with two children, and $4,705 (~15%) if single.

Someone earning 16k a year ($8/hour, 40 hours per week, 50 weeks a year) will pay $1,105 assuming no other credits. That suggests that their are other credits that i didn't look at or that the lowest earners are paying -something- (6.91% of earnings in this case).

In a flat tax world, that same person would pay be paying twice as much tax if it was on every dollar. In a flat sales tax world (no income tax) that person would also being paying tax on pretty much every dollar, as 16k pa doesn't allow much in the way of savings to accumulate.

I'd suggest the child tax breaks are probably disproportionately large. But I don't pay US tax, I don't have kids, and I don't have a problem with the tax system in Canada either.... though elimination of the property transfer tax would be nice, but that's a different story.
"Then you can admire the real gambler, who has neither eaten, slept, thought nor lived, he has so smarted under the scourge of his martingale, so suffered on the rack of his desire for a coup at trente-et-quarante" - Honore de Balzac, 1829

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