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taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 6:04 am

continued from problems with the Republican party thread.
thegreekdog wrote:
"How much tax revenue is needed to pay down the debt" which isn't even the scenario you're posing. You're posing a scenario of providing MORE services than are currently provided AND paying down the debt.
thegreekdog wrote:
Bring something to the goddamn table Player. I bring information, websites, and data constantly. You bring nothing. You're willfully ignorant.

I am not demanding more services. If you mean controls on pollution and such to which I refered, frist, I don't begin to dream that will actually happen in this negotiation. It is what I think should happen, not what will... but beyond that, the trouble is we ARE paying for it right now, all of us. The last time this came up I described various systems that would make those generating the pollution pay for it.


I willl give a couple of specific tax ideas, since you are demanding them.. but I just don't think that this really is part of the "fale of the Republican Party", it is a change needed to our system.

Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.

ALSO, I would create a seperate disability system that doesn't draw from SS. Again, part of the SS system problem is that it is being asked to do far too much with essentially the same revenue formula initially figured. Along with this would be a serious tightening of the rules.. not just that someone is not able to perform their job, but any job.

Finally, I would create a long term unemployment program to go along with the current one. For the long term bit, I would like to see some way to include self-employed individuals. We don't want people (essentially) closing their businesses for a couple of months to go on unemployment, but if they are not able to restart in 6 months or a year, then they need help.. but again, it needs to have added requirements, such as true proof of applying for jobs, enrollment in education programs, etc, etc. As a part of this program, I would include a kind of mortgage forbearance or payment. AS long as the mortgage is below the average rent for an area, the owner would be allowed to either pay just interest while in the program OR would be able to borrow the money to pay the basic mortgage.

I would hold banks at least equally responsible for downturns in home mortgages. Bankers, not buyers are the experts. When they offer a loan for a house for $200K, then most average people have tended to think that the bank offered that because they knew the house was truly worth that much. It is a reasonable thought. They ARE the experts, not most buyers of houses. The bank should, at a minimum, have to "eat" half the loss and restructure the loan accordingly.

All of these things would have helped and will help to stabilize the economy at the bottom when there is another downturn. The first thing is to "stop the bleeding" that is what this is.

For businesses, I would cut out entertainment deductions, deductions for things like company cars and so forth. Direct supplies to make products, direct employee costs and taxes/fees are would stay as deductions, but not most everything else. Its up to the company to decide if buying a car is profitable for them or not, not for tax payers to give a tax break because they want one.

The only deductions I would keep are those that go directly toward saving taxpayer money. I would, for example, give a company a deduction if they have their own internal fire service... particularly if they make it available to local residents in need.

But, like I said.... this is getting into a lot of details that have nothing to do with the Republican Party specifically.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby thegreekdog on Thu Mar 07, 2013 8:00 am

I'm excited for a tax-specific thread.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


While admirable, it's going to be hard for politicians to sell this to their constituents who have already paid in to social security. I'm not certain how much money that would raise, but it would not help the budget deficit mainly because the extra money paid in by the lower wage workers (since when is $50K a low wage?) would not go to social security, it would go to a separate fund where the expenditures (payouts) would be break-even with the revenues (the new social security taxes).

PLAYER57832 wrote:I would create a long term unemployment program to go along with the current one. For the long term bit, I would like to see some way to include self-employed individuals. We don't want people (essentially) closing their businesses for a couple of months to go on unemployment, but if they are not able to restart in 6 months or a year, then they need help.. but again, it needs to have added requirements, such as true proof of applying for jobs, enrollment in education programs, etc, etc. As a part of this program, I would include a kind of mortgage forbearance or payment. AS long as the mortgage is below the average rent for an area, the owner would be allowed to either pay just interest while in the program OR would be able to borrow the money to pay the basic mortgage.


I like this one, although my unemployment program idea would cost a lot more (and I think would be more helpful than yours). I'll get to that later. This also seems less like a tax issue and more like a spending issue.

PLAYER57832 wrote:I would hold banks at least equally responsible for downturns in home mortgages. Bankers, not buyers are the experts. When they offer a loan for a house for $200K, then most average people have tended to think that the bank offered that because they knew the house was truly worth that much. It is a reasonable thought. They ARE the experts, not most buyers of houses. The bank should, at a minimum, have to "eat" half the loss and restructure the loan accordingly.


I absolutely, whole-heartedly, and without reservations vehemently disagree with this and find it repugnant. If someone who wishes to purchase a home does not understand the concept of income, expenditures, and interest rates, that person should be subject to whatever negative things happen to them. And yes, I've had people try to sell me homes I could not afford and I find that equally repugnant. But I'm not in favor of letting people live in a house they cannot afford for five years before kicking them out and letting them get out of paying for the home.

This also seems less like a tax issue and more like a spending issue (and not even government spending).

PLAYER57832 wrote:For businesses, I would cut out entertainment deductions, deductions for things like company cars and so forth. Direct supplies to make products, direct employee costs and taxes/fees are would stay as deductions, but not most everything else. Its up to the company to decide if buying a car is profitable for them or not, not for tax payers to give a tax break because they want one.


Agreed to a certain extent, although you have a warped sense of why companies purchase cars. I have been looking for studies indicating how much tax revenue is estimated to be lost based on various deductions, but my inclination here is that eliminating the entertainment deduction (the meals and entertainment deduction is I believe limited to 2% of income, I think) is not going to do much.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby thegreekdog on Thu Mar 07, 2013 8:05 am

My preliminary tax and spending plan.

(1) Over the course of a period of time, close all U.S. military bases on foreign soil that are not engaged in the prosecution of overt warfare.

Estimated Savings - TBD

(2) Over the course of a period of time, "fix" the GAO waste reports that come out on a yearly basis.

Estimated Savings - $200 billion

(3) Increase the estate tax to 100% of any liquid assets valued at over $5 million, adjusted for inflation, including stocks, bonds, and cash. This requires a complete overhaul of estate and gift taxes.

Estimated Revenue - Unknown

(4) Eliminate all domestic tax credits other than a tax credit for manufacturing (which would be strictly defined) and make that credit substantial enough to have US companies bring manufacturing back to the United States.

Estimated Revenue - Unknown

(5) Eliminate all non-business deductions (similar to Player's idea) for businesses

Estimated Revenue - Unknown; likely incredibly small

(6) Increase the capital gains tax rate to equal the ordinary income tax rate

Estimated Revenue - Unknown (and unknowable).

(7) Other Domestic Spending Cuts - TBD
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:39 am

thegreekdog wrote:I'm excited for a tax-specific thread.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


While admirable, it's going to be hard for politicians to sell this to their constituents who have already paid in to social security. I'm not certain how much money that would raise, but it would not help the budget deficit mainly because the extra money paid in by the lower wage workers (since when is $50K a low wage?) would not go to social security, it would go to a separate fund where the expenditures (payouts) would be break-even with the revenues (the new social security taxes).

This is not about lowering the deficit, it is about ensuring that future workers are protected into retirement., something that won't happen as things stand right now.

This essentially replaces the old style pension with a social security type government program. It won't be quite as lucrative, but will help provide a minimum fall back for retirees in the future.

The 50K is arbitrary, somewhat, but I remember reading somewhere that 401Ks only work for those making more than 75K or so its not entirely abstract. Even so, focus on the idea, not the total. I already said the total was just to give the general idea.
thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:I would create a long term unemployment program to go along with the current one. For the long term bit, I would like to see some way to include self-employed individuals. We don't want people (essentially) closing their businesses for a couple of months to go on unemployment, but if they are not able to restart in 6 months or a year, then they need help.. but again, it needs to have added requirements, such as true proof of applying for jobs, enrollment in education programs, etc, etc. As a part of this program, I would include a kind of mortgage forbearance or payment. AS long as the mortgage is below the average rent for an area, the owner would be allowed to either pay just interest while in the program OR would be able to borrow the money to pay the basic mortgage.


I like this one, although my unemployment program idea would cost a lot more (and I think would be more helpful than yours). I'll get to that later. This also seems less like a tax issue and more like a spending issue.

Its about tax because it means fewer people burdened. Right now, Congress keeps passed extended unemployment benefits. People need them, but the system was not set up for that. Basically, the original idea of unemployment insurance was good, but needs to be updated. The additional tax won't need to be quite as high as the current system, because fewer people will be in it. Even so, yes.. it will be additional.

Basically, this and the other moves are about a kind of "forced responsibility". You can call that "nannism" or you can say that these are things people just are not able (or willing) to do on their own, but that need doing. That is a role of government.. making people do what is truly needed when necessary.

thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:I would hold banks at least equally responsible for downturns in home mortgages. Bankers, not buyers are the experts. When they offer a loan for a house for $200K, then most average people have tended to think that the bank offered that because they knew the house was truly worth that much. It is a reasonable thought. They ARE the experts, not most buyers of houses. The bank should, at a minimum, have to "eat" half the loss and restructure the loan accordingly.


I absolutely, whole-heartedly, and without reservations vehemently disagree with this and find it repugnant. If someone who wishes to purchase a home does not understand the concept of income, expenditures, and interest rates, that person should be subject to whatever negative things happen to them.
OH bull... buying a home should not require a real estate degree. In fact... gee there is no such thing.


thegreekdog wrote:And yes, I've had people try to sell me homes I could not afford and I find that equally repugnant. But I'm not in favor of letting people live in a house they cannot afford for five years before kicking them out and letting them get out of paying for the home.
ah, but see, this is not about people buying houses they cannot afford, it is about houses losing value because banks artificially keep the prices up, knowing they won't lose.. the homeowner would. Note that nowhere in this did I say that people should not have to pay.. I am saying that banks gain fully when there is a gain, they should take some responsibility when there is a loss as well, in this case, half.. and refinance under the same interest or lower. Nothing in that translates to "letting people stay for free for 5 years" as you imply, but nice try at hyperbole.

thegreekdog wrote:This also seems less like a tax issue and more like a spending issue (and not even government spending).
Yes.. and no. We are paying to bail out these banks. I am saying the idea that owning a bank automatically entitles you to make a profit is just wrong. AND, making us take the hit is wrong.

thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:For businesses, I would cut out entertainment deductions, deductions for things like company cars and so forth. Direct supplies to make products, direct employee costs and taxes/fees are would stay as deductions, but not most everything else. Its up to the company to decide if buying a car is profitable for them or not, not for tax payers to give a tax break because they want one.


Agreed to a certain extent, although you have a warped sense of why companies purchase cars. I have been looking for studies indicating how much tax revenue is estimated to be lost based on various deductions, but my inclination here is that eliminating the entertainment deduction (the meals and entertainment deduction is I believe limited to 2% of income, I think) is not going to do much.

I used cars just as a "top of the hat" and easy to understand example. Right now, a lot of things that everybody needs get to be deducted if they can be considered "business expenses". The real impact is that this becomes a kind of back-handed subsidy, or a way of, again, penalizing wages more heavily than investment or business income. At a minimum, I think they should be equal.

In honesty, I would like a graduated system whereby initial wages, up to a certain point (say the mostly arbitrary but neat figure of 100K, just as an example) is given a lower tax rate, anything after that a higher rate. BUT.. uniform.

One thing I am sort of on the fence about is inheritance tax, which might surprise you. It has, fundamentally already been taxed. Still, the standard is to tax money when it is transferred and that can be a pretty big transfer. I think it should be easier to pass on businesses and even things like houses, particularly historically significant houses, but maybe taxing straight money and stock holdings is OK. (and yes, I realize that stocks equal ownership... but not quite in the same way as direct ownership).

Anyway, my feeling is that there should be 2 premise behind taxes. First, the amount of income needed to meet output. Listening to the Republicans talk, it almost seems as if they think they can just wave a magic wand and magically (or free marketedly) get things like schools, roads, natural resource protections, etc, etc. History disagrees. The market is good at squeezing profit from things. That includes turning inventions into other things when there is a lot of new tech "out there" or very ready to be discovered. WE have seen a LOT of that in the past few decades and some people have sort of come to expect that this will continue. But, when you start to look at things like real limits in resources, technology advances that are looming... and our ability to provide educated people to work on those solutions, then the picture is not so great right now. Too much of the Republican plan is about "meism" or "support big business and the rest will just take care of itself". They say that without fully acknowledging some very special circumstances that allowed our current state to be...things like the advent of lasers and computers, things like women and minorities more fully entering the workforce and things like a huge influx of illegal workers willing to take much lower wages than most citizens for the equal job.

The bottom line.. if the free market were really and truly about improving society, then it would not be standard for appliances to just die after 5 years of use. (down from 10 just 15 years ago!) AND, we would not have tons of waste in dumps while Europe is recycling away a lot of what we throw away. The free market is great for what it does, but understanding its limits is as important as understanding its strengths. Taxes are needed to allow the government to do the things that the free market cannot or won't efficiently. And yes, "government" is NOT a synonym for "inefficient". It can be... but that is partisanship and individual greed, not "government". We can fix those two things without removing the government part.

Ironically, when you want to look at true partisanship and greed.. big business thrives on those things. Where the market does work, it needs those things. BUT... because we have not recognized the limits of the market, we have let Politicians convince us that doing away with government is "the answer" instead of letting the free market operate where it does well and letting other systems.. be it central planning or a science/data driven mechanism or some other amalgamate, operate where they do well.

Pretending that it has to be solely one or solely the other is the REAL problem. Not being willing to listen to diverse and different ideas because one has to hold to a specific "ideology" is the problem. Remember, people create ideologies. People can create new ones, if given a chance.

Taxes are a big part of that (but only part).
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby thegreekdog on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:03 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:OH bull... buying a home should not require a real estate degree. In fact... gee there is no such thing


It doesn't. "Gee, I have an income of $50,000 a year and they want to sell me a $800,000 house. I wonder if I can afford it? I think so because this banker tells me I can."

Buying a home should take common sense or else, honestly, f*ck you... pay for it your goddamn self.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Right now, a lot of things that everybody needs get to be deducted if they can be considered "business expenses".


Like what? Give me 10 examples.

I'll deal with the rest later. These two jumped out as being absurd.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby BigBallinStalin on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:08 pm

Getting tax credits/reduced taxes (however it specifically works) for "business expenses" is not a big problem because (1) it costs about $30 to create an LLC. (2) Presumably, anyone is legally allowed to do it, and (3) almost everyone is mentally capable of creating an LLC.

Whatever's player's case against deducting business expenses may be, I don't see why she's so concerned about it. If anything, she should insist that more people form LLCs in order to reap the benefits.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby Night Strike on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:19 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:Yes.. and no. We are paying to bail out these banks. I am saying the idea that owning a bank automatically entitles you to make a profit is just wrong. AND, making us take the hit is wrong.


We could also stop bailing out the banks and guaranteeing future bailouts for being "too big to fail". Furthermore, who are you to tell someone they can't earn a profit? Are you wanting all the banks to be nationalized so that no one makes any profit? Sheesh!

thegreekdog wrote:(3) Increase the estate tax to 100% of any liquid assets valued at over $5 million, adjusted for inflation, including stocks, bonds, and cash. This requires a complete overhaul of estate and gift taxes.


No, no, and no. The government doesn't deserve any money from people simply because they died. All that money was already taxed when they were purchased/stored, and any money that hasn't previously been dispersed will still be taxed under our current system (such as capital gains on stocks). It's double taxation in the worst form and punishes those who accumulated wealth and chose to pass it down to their survivors. Keep the money in private hands, not in the government's hands.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby patches70 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:31 pm

Night Strike wrote:
thegreekdog wrote:(3) Increase the estate tax to 100% of any liquid assets valued at over $5 million, adjusted for inflation, including stocks, bonds, and cash. This requires a complete overhaul of estate and gift taxes.


No, no, and no. The government doesn't deserve any money from people simply because they died. All that money was already taxed when they were purchased/stored, and any money that hasn't previously been dispersed will still be taxed under our current system (such as capital gains on stocks). It's double taxation in the worst form and punishes those who accumulated wealth and chose to pass it down to their survivors. Keep the money in private hands, not in the government's hands.



Yeah, f*ck that. We work for ourselves and our family. What we have is to pass on to them, no one else is entitled to that.

Anything that gives more money to the government is like giving more crack to a crackhead.

The US government took in $2.7 trillion in revenue and if that's not enough money then it's the government who has to adjust their spending. Not us having to give them even more money. Those living on the government tit just keep expanding in number as more and more is taken from everyone.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:35 pm

thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:OH bull... buying a home should not require a real estate degree. In fact... gee there is no such thing


It doesn't. "Gee, I have an income of $50,000 a year and they want to sell me a $800,000 house. I wonder if I can afford it? I think so because this banker tells me I can."

Buying a home should take common sense or else, honestly, f*ck you... pay for it your goddamn self.

You borrowing Nightstrike's tactics now?

Exaggerations can make anything seem unreasonable. The equation that was ACTUALLY made was that the bank would loan folks homes they knew they could barely afford, becuase the BANK would make out, regardless. That was largely true, but they overextended themselves by quite a bit, a few banks to the extreme. MY point is that if all banks knew they would have to be held partially accountable... (and honestly, its not even so much "accountable" in this case as not gaining quite as much profit, because they still get the interest, still get the gains over the long haul), then suddenly, "magically" the loans would be structured in more reasonable ways from the start.

If a BANK wants to loan MY MONEY (and remember... they are not loaning their money, its OUR money!..t he money of depositors and investors, which is gauranteed by our tax dollars in return!) then they need to do so responsibly. Making them accountable is part of that. No better way than saying "if you make a stupid loan..you share the downturn, you don't pass it wholly off onto the poor guy you convinced could take the loan".
thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:Right now, a lot of things that everybody needs get to be deducted if they can be considered "business expenses".


Like what? Give me 10 examples.

I'll deal with the rest later. These two jumped out as being absurd.

:roll: Why so you can nitpick me to death instead of looking at the overall concept? You obviously know your way around tax law better than I. That doesn't mean that your philosophy is better or more productive than mine.
Anyway, here are 10:

#1 Entertainment expenses. You want to entertain your clients to get business? Fine... but either you get enough profit to justify it or you don't. No tax incentive needed. You do have to eat, anyway.... and so do they.

#2. Vehicle expenses. Similar argument. Sure, its part of doing business, but giving a tax break makes it seem less expensive than it really is. Again, either its worthwhile or not.

#3. Moving expenses... when the move is out of the country, absolutely. In other cases, too. Again ,, you want to move, fine.. but on your own dollar.

#4. Travel expenses. This is a biggie, and part of what allows folks to move money outside a country with alacrity. That is, its not big in terms of taxes, but is big in terms of making something cheaper than it ought to be.

#5. Uniforms. People need to dress. If you want your workers to wear specific clothing, there is a very good chance those clothes are cheaper than what, say your average teen or office worker needs to wear. Why should a uniform be deductable?

#6. Agricultural subsidies for sugar, many other products. In a few cases, keeping them makes sense, but in a very reworked fashion. That is, I would rather see crop insurance than subsidies to even out natural disaster losses for grains and livestock. I would also limit who can recieve these benefits so that smaller farmers are favored over the big agri-farmers. (getting into why would take several pages, but the bottom line is that the country is better off with smaller farmers who live on the land they work than most big agrifarmers owned by absentee landowners).

#7. Office supplies. You want a pen? Unless you are selling those pens as a product, then no deduction. Either use them or don't.

#8. Training to keep your employees up to speed. Training that will allow employees to move up, get better paying jobs and so forth.. deductable, but things required for you to stay in business--no.

#9.Organizational memberships, subscriptions to professional journals. This one I am more iffy on... basically, most science journals are not at all profitable and are essentially required for people to keep up in their profession. In some cases, the journals of other industries are similar. Then again... I have seem plenty of examples where the "journal" is basically a PR piece and where the society/membership is basically a glorified golf club, but more exclusive.

#10. Most depreciation. YOu buy it, you own it. If it loses value, it loses value. You replace it when needed.


NOTE... none of these are particularly big or secret or targeted at specific big industries. A lot of the worst deductions are... and are very hard to even find for the average person.
Last edited by PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby Night Strike on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:47 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


So your answer to a governmental program that was designed to fail is to double down on the commitment to it and force people to put more of their money into that system instead of having the freedom to invest it as they so choose? I would much rather have control over my own money then hand even more over to the government and not know what will happen in retirement. People don't have enough to live on in retirement because they made the choice to not save for that retirement mostly because the government promised them free money. It has nothing to do with 401Ks and IRAs not being sufficient.......it's that those options weren't sufficiently funded by the individual.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:49 pm

thegreekdog wrote:My preliminary tax and spending plan.

(1) Over the course of a period of time, close all U.S. military bases on foreign soil that are not engaged in the prosecution of overt warfare.

This is a military question, not a tax one. Just because they are not directly engaged in acknowledged warfare doesn't mean they are useless. That said, I agree that some bases could be closed.. but I am not going to specify which ones. I leave that to people who have the knowledge and time to look into it.

thegreekdog wrote:(2) Over the course of a period of time, "fix" the GAO waste reports that come out on a yearly basis.Estimated Savings - $200 billion


? Not sure what you mean.

If you mean to cap waste, sure, no brainer there.

The trouble is that too often "waste" is a political term and not a practical one. Teh tea tasting board did need closure (that was a few years ago, and I may have the name wrong). However, a lot of agricultural testing is necessary to promote safety. I am OK with a small amoung of research into, say, getting people to eat unexploited fish stocks or grains that require less fertilizer, but it has to be limited and targeted and structured so that its paid for by the products in the end.
Estimated Savings - $200 billion

thegreekdog wrote:(3) Increase the estate tax to 100% of any liquid assets valued at over $5 million, adjusted for inflation, including stocks, bonds, and cash. This requires a complete overhaul of estate and gift taxes.

Estimated Revenue - Unknown

Sounds interesting, and close to what I suggest below. Would require research to get into specifics. I will accept your $5 million as a figure you have chosen due to something you have some knowledge about.

thegreekdog wrote:(4) Eliminate all domestic tax credits other than a tax credit for manufacturing (which would be strictly defined) and make that credit substantial enough to have US companies bring manufacturing back to the United States.

I am afraid I am not in favor if using taxes alone to bring manufacturing back, nor do I think this could really happen. I am OK with limited tarriffs and such to make our industries on a par with other countries, when needed to make us competetive in our markets. BUT... that gets tricky. Overall, I think that businesses of all types should succeed or fail on their own. The only investment from tax money should be to research that is too esoteric, too removed from immediate profit potential to depend upon private research OR that is just too critically vital (this happened with the "space race", various disease issues, etc.... but also such things as basic laser research and initial computer research).

thegreekdog wrote:(5) Eliminate all non-business deductions (similar to Player's idea) for businesses

Estimated Revenue - Unknown; likely incredibly small
Already gave examples.. likley you know of more than I do, though.

thegreekdog wrote:(6) Increase the capital gains tax rate to equal the ordinary income tax rate

Estimated Revenue - Unknown (and unknowable).

Agreed, except I would actually tax capitol gains slightly higher, particularly when the investment is held only a short time (less than, say 10 years or so).
thegreekdog wrote:(7) Other Domestic Spending Cuts - TBD

I am definitely interested waiting to see....
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:53 pm

Night Strike wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


So your answer to a governmental program that was designed to fail is to double down on the commitment to it and force people to put more of their money into that system instead of having the freedom to invest it as they so choose?

Oh please, Social security was not "designed to fail".... at least until Reagan and later Republican cronies decided to make it fail.
My grandmothers, my parents, millions across this nation, today are able to enjoy reasonable retirements largely due to Social Security.


Night Strike wrote: I would much rather have control over my own money then hand even more over to the government and not know what will happen in retirement. People don't have enough to live on in retirement because they made the choice to not save for that retirement mostly because the government promised them free money. It has nothing to do with 401Ks and IRAs not being sufficient.......it's that those options weren't sufficiently funded by the individual.

Actually, you are just wrong. 401Ks work well enough IF you make enough money to put in enough to ride out low turns of the market. IF you are not making something like 75K, you just are not able to invest enough. Claiming you can is an illusion... AND that depends on the market staying at a good growth rate, which is not at all gauranteed.

Also, its pretty hard to save for retirement when you wind up having to use your money to pay for your spouse's medical treatments ... or when your money was stolen from you.. or any one of a thousand other things that happen.

Again, you live in a ideological world. Try the real one, for a change. The facts don't match your rhetoric.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:57 pm

A PS ---
thegreekdog wrote:I'm excited for a tax-specific thread.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


While admirable, it's going to be hard for politicians to sell this to their constituents who have already paid in to social security. I'm

Basically, this needs to be sold as a government held old style pension with a gauranteed return. The "seller" would be that this money would be THEIRS, with a gauranteed 5% return... and enough that no one should have to retire on welfare.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby Night Strike on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:06 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:
Night Strike wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


So your answer to a governmental program that was designed to fail is to double down on the commitment to it and force people to put more of their money into that system instead of having the freedom to invest it as they so choose?

Oh please, Social security was not "designed to fail".... at least until Reagan and later Republican cronies decided to make it fail.
My grandmothers, my parents, millions across this nation, today are able to enjoy reasonable retirements largely due to Social Security.


It handed out money to people immediately upon retirement even though they hadn't paid into the system. It failed to adjust the retirement age to be related to the growing lifespan of people, so it's now supporting many more years than designed. Those are both the very definition of "designed to fail".


PLAYER57832 wrote:
Night Strike wrote: I would much rather have control over my own money then hand even more over to the government and not know what will happen in retirement. People don't have enough to live on in retirement because they made the choice to not save for that retirement mostly because the government promised them free money. It has nothing to do with 401Ks and IRAs not being sufficient.......it's that those options weren't sufficiently funded by the individual.

Actually, you are just wrong. 401Ks work well enough IF you make enough money to put in enough to ride out low turns of the market. IF you are not making something like 75K, you just are not able to invest enough. Claiming you can is an illusion... AND that depends on the market staying at a good growth rate, which is not at all gauranteed.

Also, its pretty hard to save for retirement when you wind up having to use your money to pay for your spouse's medical treatments ... or when your money was stolen from you.. or any one of a thousand other things that happen.

Again, you live in a ideological world. Try the real one, for a change. The facts don't match your rhetoric.


It depends on what kind of life you choose to live. If you try to buy everything possible and live at your above your means, then you're going to be ill-prepared for retirement. If you choose to live below your means, then you will have the opportunity to save money for retirement on your own and have it grow to the point that you will have plenty of money to live comfortably on in retirement.

And where did we get this notion that the government's job is to be there when things go wrong? The government's job is to punish those who DO wrong and even to seek restitution for crimes, but the government is not responsible for providing everything for a person simply because things didn't go the way they hoped. Plus, the government doesn't even discern between those who had bad fortune and those who chose unwisely.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby Night Strike on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:10 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:A PS ---
thegreekdog wrote:I'm excited for a tax-specific thread.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


While admirable, it's going to be hard for politicians to sell this to their constituents who have already paid in to social security. I'm

Basically, this needs to be sold as a government held old style pension with a gauranteed return. The "seller" would be that this money would be THEIRS, with a gauranteed 5% return... and enough that no one should have to retire on welfare.


Where does this guaranteed interest come from when the government doesn't actually create any underlying wealth? Furthermore, why don't I get to keep that same amount of money and invest it in funds that have had lifetime returns averaging 8% or more? Where is my freedom to choose?
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby patches70 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:13 pm

Night Strike wrote:Where does this guaranteed interest come from when the government doesn't actually create any underlying wealth? Furthermore, why don't I get to keep that same amount of money and invest it in funds that have had lifetime returns averaging 8% or more? Where is my freedom to choose?


They take that social security money and buy bonds with them! They get the interest from the bonds. Wealth created!

LOL
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:15 pm

Night Strike wrote:
It handed out money to people immediately upon retirement even though they hadn't paid into the system. It failed to adjust the retirement age to be related to the growing lifespan of people, so it's now supporting many more years than designed. Those are both the very definition of "designed to fail".

The real problem, today is that Reagan used the SS "trust" as a fund from which he could borrow to balance the budget. He evern bragged about it at the time and not many people complained... because the "good times were a-rolling".

The other bit, about not adjusting the age limit, was not something the ORIGINAL designers would have thought much about because it had not happened. You refer to a tweak that needs to happen, not a "system designed to fail".
Face it. You are against social security because of the "social" part. The rest of the country tends to like it because it DID offer "security".
Yor objections are purely philosophical. Their liking of it is purely practical.
Night Strike wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:
Night Strike wrote: I would much rather have control over my own money then hand even more over to the government and not know what will happen in retirement. People don't have enough to live on in retirement because they made the choice to not save for that retirement mostly because the government promised them free money. It has nothing to do with 401Ks and IRAs not being sufficient.......it's that those options weren't sufficiently funded by the individual.

Actually, you are just wrong. 401Ks work well enough IF you make enough money to put in enough to ride out low turns of the market. IF you are not making something like 75K, you just are not able to invest enough. Claiming you can is an illusion... AND that depends on the market staying at a good growth rate, which is not at all gauranteed.

Also, its pretty hard to save for retirement when you wind up having to use your money to pay for your spouse's medical treatments ... or when your money was stolen from you.. or any one of a thousand other things that happen.

Again, you live in a ideological world. Try the real one, for a change. The facts don't match your rhetoric.


It depends on what kind of life you choose to live. If you try to buy everything possible and live at your above your means, then you're going to be ill-prepared for retirement. If you choose to live below your means, then you will have the opportunity to save money for retirement on your own and have it grow to the point that you will have plenty of money to live comfortably on in retirement.

OH BULL.... why don't you bother to actually investigate your claims before you start pronouncing how much you know of this. Just like with the welfare debate.. you spout off what you THINK is true instead of what actually IS true.

The truth is that people making lower wages do not have anything left after paying for basics like rent and so forth. Saving the 5-10% that is the standard contribution to a 401K (often the most allowed in many companies), will NOT Provide for enough retirement income, will not provide a big enough cushion to ride out downturns unless you can put in something like 200K.


Night Strike wrote:And where did we get this notion that the government's job is to be there when things go wrong? .

OH, let's see... you can start with just about any major philosopher, and just get into practical history. That IS one of the major purposes and responsibilities of government. It is also what keeps us as a civilized country.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:18 pm

Night Strike wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:A PS ---
thegreekdog wrote:I'm excited for a tax-specific thread.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Frist, I would increase the Social Security payments made by everyone, but particularly lower wage workers. We face a crisis in the future as these people won't have enough to live upon in retirement. Savings through 401K and IRAs doesn't work well for that group for a lot of reasons. For discussion (only -- purely arbitrary figure, I don't have time to crunch the real numbers right now), say anyone making $50K or less would be required to pay double. BUT, that extra payment would be "theirs". It would be like a 401K in that they would recieve direct return from it, but not like a 401K or old style pension in that they cannnot withdraw money early. That money would NOT be available for the government to "borrow" or use for anything other than SS.


While admirable, it's going to be hard for politicians to sell this to their constituents who have already paid in to social security. I'm

Basically, this needs to be sold as a government held old style pension with a gauranteed return. The "seller" would be that this money would be THEIRS, with a gauranteed 5% return... and enough that no one should have to retire on welfare.


Where does this guaranteed interest come from when the government doesn't actually create any underlying wealth?

Same as the G fund for government employees.
Night Strike wrote:Furthermore, why don't I get to keep that same amount of money and invest it in funds that have had lifetime returns averaging 8% or more? Where is my freedom to choose?

Becuase those 8% are not gauranteed... and the rest of us don't want to have to support you in your old age because you made poor investment decisions.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby thegreekdog on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:56 pm

patches70 wrote:
Night Strike wrote:
thegreekdog wrote:(3) Increase the estate tax to 100% of any liquid assets valued at over $5 million, adjusted for inflation, including stocks, bonds, and cash. This requires a complete overhaul of estate and gift taxes.


No, no, and no. The government doesn't deserve any money from people simply because they died. All that money was already taxed when they were purchased/stored, and any money that hasn't previously been dispersed will still be taxed under our current system (such as capital gains on stocks). It's double taxation in the worst form and punishes those who accumulated wealth and chose to pass it down to their survivors. Keep the money in private hands, not in the government's hands.



Yeah, f*ck that. We work for ourselves and our family. What we have is to pass on to them, no one else is entitled to that.

Anything that gives more money to the government is like giving more crack to a crackhead.

The US government took in $2.7 trillion in revenue and if that's not enough money then it's the government who has to adjust their spending. Not us having to give them even more money. Those living on the government tit just keep expanding in number as more and more is taken from everyone.


Coming into riches merely because one's ancestor dies is the antithesis of the American dream. It is repugnant for you two to even suggest that the money was earned in any capacity. Furthermore, we're a republic, not an aristocracy.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby thegreekdog on Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:08 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:The trouble is that too often "waste" is a political term and not a practical one.


It's not a political determination. It's a determination made by either the CBO or GAO (can't remember which one) regarding the amount of waste in a given year. It runs between $200 billion and $250 billion.

PLAYER57832 wrote:I am afraid I am not in favor if using taxes alone to bring manufacturing back, nor do I think this could really happen. I am OK with limited tarriffs and such to make our industries on a par with other countries, when needed to make us competetive in our markets. BUT... that gets tricky. Overall, I think that businesses of all types should succeed or fail on their own. The only investment from tax money should be to research that is too esoteric, too removed from immediate profit potential to depend upon private research OR that is just too critically vital (this happened with the "space race", various disease issues, etc.... but also such things as basic laser research and initial computer research).


I don't think it would work as I think wages, regulations, and other impediments far outweigh taxes, but it's worth a shot.



PLAYER57832 wrote:The equation that was ACTUALLY made was that the bank would loan folks homes they knew they could barely afford, becuase the BANK would make out, regardless.


So what? Who cares? Things are offered to me on a regular basis that I don't buy because I can't afford. Basic financial acumen will tell apsiring homeowners that they cannot afford something. I'm not going to pay a bank for the mistake of someone without basic financial acumen. Sorry Player. Not going to do it.

PLAYER57832 wrote:Why so you can nitpick me to death instead of looking at the overall concept?


YES! A thousand times YES! You make these broad generalizations and theories that have no basis in fact. You have no idea what money will be raised or saved or how the economy will be affected; not only do you not know the exact or estimated amount, you don't even directionally know what will happen.

Let's take your list:

- Meals and entertainment, travel, vehicles - Do you know why these are deductible? They are deductible because the federal government thinks it will encourage people to buy these things. If these deductions are gone, how much less likely is it that companies will purchase entertainment, travel, or vehicles?

- Uniforms and moving - If we do away with these deductions, employees will bear the cost of these items. That's fine with me, just want to make sure it's okay with you that a janitor now has to purchase his own uniform.

- Agricultural subsidies - Not a tax issue.

- Office supplies, training, organizational memberships - These appear to be business expenses, but you apparently disagree. Presumably, like uniforms and moving, the cost will fall to employees again. Which, again, you might be okay with.

- Depreciation - This is also a vehicle by which the government can encourage the purchase of products (at least with respect to bonus depreciation). Additionally, from a book/accounting perspective, depreciation is actually a real thing. Furthermore, when a company sells the product at the end of its useful life, the basis of the product is less than it was when purchased, therefore there is more likey to be gain recognized and tax paid by the company when it sells the product.

I applaud you for actually looking up standard business deductions. The next step is to determine, directionally, where this will put the tax revenue (I think, based on my experience looking at tax returns for the last almost 10 years, the depreciation disallowance will be a big difference, the others not so much) and from an economic perspective (I don't put much stock into companies buying something merely for tax reasons, so perhaps the economic effect would not be great).
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby Night Strike on Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:10 pm

PLAYER57832 wrote:Face it. You are against social security because of the "social" part. The rest of the country tends to like it because it DID offer "security".


Actually, I'm against it because I'm forced to participate in a system that will not have enough money remaining to return my contributions back to me, even though it's "guaranteed".


PLAYER57832 wrote:The truth is that people making lower wages do not have anything left after paying for basics like rent and so forth. Saving the 5-10% that is the standard contribution to a 401K (often the most allowed in many companies), will NOT Provide for enough retirement income, will not provide a big enough cushion to ride out downturns unless you can put in something like 200K.


Or one could pay off their debts before retirement. Plus, that not having money left over is a product of the combined failure of Social Security and individuals not saving on their own.

And as far as I can tell, employers can't limit what you choose to add to a 401k. The government has both individual and combined limits, but the employers can't limit your personal contributions. They can of course limit how much they match or even contribute on their own. Furthermore, everyone can contribute money to an IRA (unless they already make too much money) on either pre-tax or after-tax basis, so everyone has an opportunity to save plenty of money ($23k per year per person in 2013, not including employer) if they choose to save it.


PLAYER57832 wrote:OH, let's see... you can start with just about any major philosopher, and just get into practical history. That IS one of the major purposes and responsibilities of government. It is also what keeps us as a civilized country.


So our country wasn't civilized prior to the free handouts mandated in the 1930s and 1960s?
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby PLAYER57832 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:37 pm

thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:The trouble is that too often "waste" is a political term and not a practical one.


It's not a political determination. It's a determination made by either the CBO or GAO (can't remember which one) regarding the amount of waste in a given year. It runs between $200 billion and $250 billion.

thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:I am afraid I am not in favor if using taxes alone to bring manufacturing back, nor do I think this could really happen. I am OK with limited tarriffs and such to make our industries on a par with other countries, when needed to make us competetive in our markets. BUT... that gets tricky. Overall, I think that businesses of all types should succeed or fail on their own. The only investment from tax money should be to research that is too esoteric, too removed from immediate profit potential to depend upon private research OR that is just too critically vital (this happened with the "space race", various disease issues, etc.... but also such things as basic laser research and initial computer research).


I don't think it would work as I think wages, regulations, and other impediments far outweigh taxes, but it's worth a shot.

Environmental protections are the biggest advantage to manufacturing overseas.... and I find the idea of any US person being involved in getting money from a company that is polluting elsewhere just because they are not developed enough, the leaders are too corrupt to demand better.

But beyond that, a lot of manufacturers are already returning, because they find that the benefits of being here outweigh the costs. Good education, safety and environmental protections are part of what make it better here.

thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:The equation that was ACTUALLY made was that the bank would loan folks homes they knew they could barely afford, becuase the BANK would make out, regardless.


So what? Who cares? Things are offered to me on a regular basis that I don't buy because I can't afford. Basic financial acumen will tell apsiring homeowners that they cannot afford something. I'm not going to pay a bank for the mistake of someone without basic financial acumen. Sorry Player. Not going to do it.

You and I completely disagree. When someone buys a house that they CAN afford with their income.. only to have it lose value and then be told, by the bank that they cannot refinance because it lost value, ... that is not the homeowners entire responsibility. Buying a house should not take a business degree. Today, sadly, it does.



thegreekdog wrote:
PLAYER57832 wrote:Why so you can nitpick me to death instead of looking at the overall concept?


YES! A thousand times YES! You make these broad generalizations and theories that have no basis in fact. You have no idea what money will be raised or saved or how the economy will be affected; not only do you not know the exact or estimated amount, you don't even directionally know what will happen.
Really

thegreekdog wrote: Let's take your list:

- Meals and entertainment, travel, vehicles - Do you know why these are deductible? They are deductible because the federal government thinks it will encourage people to buy these things. If these deductions are gone, how much less likely is it that companies will purchase entertainment, travel, or vehicles?
Translation.. the lobbies for these industries want to see them. Fine. But not on my dime. I go out to eat with my friends, I don't get to deduct it, even if they happen to be coworkers. Same principle here.

thegreekdog wrote:
- Uniforms and moving - If we do away with these deductions, employees will bear the cost of these items. That's fine with me, just want to make sure it's okay with you that a janitor now has to purchase his own uniform.

Actually, I am. And per the moving expenses... I am OK with individuals getting the deduction if necessary for work. I am not OK with companies deducting it. The result is that either fewer people will agree to move or companies will offer compensation for it. I am fine with that.

thegreekdog wrote: - Agricultural subsidies - Not a tax issue.
It certainly is.
thegreekdog wrote:
- Office supplies, training, organizational memberships - These appear to be business expenses, but you apparently disagree. Presumably, like uniforms and moving, the cost will fall to employees again. Which, again, you might be okay with.


thegreekdog wrote: - Depreciation - This is also a vehicle by which the government can encourage the purchase of products (at least with respect to bonus depreciation). Additionally, from a book/accounting perspective, depreciation is actually a real thing. Furthermore, when a company sells the product at the end of its useful life, the basis of the product is less than it was when purchased, therefore there is more likey to be gain recognized and tax paid by the company when it sells the product.
Yes, I get it. Let the free market which is touted so often prevail.

thegreekdog wrote: I applaud you for actually looking up standard business deductions. The next step is to determine, directionally, where this will put the tax revenue (I think, based on my experience looking at tax returns for the last almost 10 years, the depreciation disallowance will be a big difference, the others not so much) and from an economic perspective (I don't put much stock into companies buying something merely for tax reasons, so perhaps the economic effect would not be great).

Like I said, a lot of the most abusive and lucrative taxes are more hidden, but the bottom line is that taxes are not the tool to encourage business. Taxes are the tool to pay for the basic infrastructure and supports we need to make the nation function well, to provide for a good society. Exceptions should involve payment for those specific things, not to encourage business.

The exceptions are research which is often unprofitable, but important down the road..the issue here is that a LOT of research seems superfulous until a use is found. Lasers, as I have pointed out are one example. No one would have envisioned that they would be as important as they are now. Yet, without that initial research, the current benefits would not happen. That is the kind of research governments need to support, because no one else will or really can.

Another exception is related...true startup industries, but even then, those that have potential to benefit society. Want to create a cheaper car.. OK. Want to create a better comb... probably not.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby BigBallinStalin on Thu Mar 07, 2013 4:06 pm

thegreekdog wrote:
patches70 wrote:
Night Strike wrote:
thegreekdog wrote:(3) Increase the estate tax to 100% of any liquid assets valued at over $5 million, adjusted for inflation, including stocks, bonds, and cash. This requires a complete overhaul of estate and gift taxes.


No, no, and no. The government doesn't deserve any money from people simply because they died. All that money was already taxed when they were purchased/stored, and any money that hasn't previously been dispersed will still be taxed under our current system (such as capital gains on stocks). It's double taxation in the worst form and punishes those who accumulated wealth and chose to pass it down to their survivors. Keep the money in private hands, not in the government's hands.



Yeah, f*ck that. We work for ourselves and our family. What we have is to pass on to them, no one else is entitled to that.

Anything that gives more money to the government is like giving more crack to a crackhead.

The US government took in $2.7 trillion in revenue and if that's not enough money then it's the government who has to adjust their spending. Not us having to give them even more money. Those living on the government tit just keep expanding in number as more and more is taken from everyone.


Coming into riches merely because one's ancestor dies is the antithesis of the American dream. It is repugnant for you two to even suggest that the money was earned in any capacity. Furthermore, we're a republic, not an aristocracy.


NOTE: I moved this debate to another thread

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=187150&start=0&view=viewpoll#p4088066

It may not be the case that a change in the rate of the estate tax will change the shape of the American, Modern aristocracy. The more intelligent will find substitutes to avoid the 100% estate tax, thereby maintaining the possibility of the status quo (i.e. the modern aristocracy). My concern is about the relatively poorer people and/or less intelligent who cannot easily find or afford such substitutes; therefore, the relatively disadvantaged will take a proportional hit to their wealth while the shape of the modern aristocracy remains more or less unchanged.

Even if a cap on the estate tax was imposed (e.g. <$1,000,000 in wealth will not be taxed), the modern aristocracy can still more or less maintain the status quo since they have the resources to circumvent a 100% estate tax + the $1 million exemption.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby thegreekdog on Thu Mar 07, 2013 4:55 pm

Hey BBS - I provided for a $5 million exemption. That should be enough to cover those who are not members of the modern aristocracy and those without intelligent tax advisors.
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Re: taxes (from Repub thread)

Postby BigBallinStalin on Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:08 pm

thegreekdog wrote:Hey BBS - I provided for a $5 million exemption. That should be enough to cover those who are not members of the modern aristocracy and those without intelligent tax advisors.


I'd imagine that the members of the modern aristocracy at the time of their deaths own assets valued at > $10 million or maybe even > $50 million, but that may be wrong. I'm not sure which percentage of the US population in terms of net wealth is part of the modern aristocracy. Also, I'm not sure if net wealth is an accurate enough proxy for modern aristocratic membership because political clout can be available to those who possess significantly less than $5,000,000 at the time of their death.

If we want to rob the modern aristocracy of their power, then we must address the fundamental provider of that power: the state--especially the US federal government. Ceteris paribus, giving the state more money through estate taxes only enlarges the politicized pool, which will still be susceptible to rent-seeking (e.g. from those with their hands in the state's coffers and from those with their hands in the politician's pockets). So, these costs of increased taxation may not offset the supposed benefits of a 100% estate tax + $5m or $50m exemption.
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