Welcome guest, is this your first visit? Create Account now to join.
  • Login:

Welcome to the Online Debate Network.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.

Poll: How much as a % of income is the "fair share" of the top 1% of earniers in the U.S.?

Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 80
  1. #1
    Super Moderator

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Louisiana
    Posts
    9,148
    Post Thanks / Like

    Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Purpose and question
    The question is about what exactly is "fair share" in regards to the wealthy in this country. There are two ways to look at it.
    1) Fair share of the total Gov spending.
    2) Fair share of taxes paid on income.
    Question to opponent. Which do you think fair share refers to, or should refer to?

    Question to opponent. In the poll answer, what is the total % of personal income that is "fair share" of the rich(top 1%) to pay?
    Also
    Question to opponent.How much (if any) is absolutely intolerable, or the maximum that should never be exceeded?

    In regards to #1
    For the purpose of this portion we will pretend that the top 1% of the population has an unlimited amount of money(NOT A REAL INFINITE.. simply enough no matter what). So that for the sake of argument 100% (of gov spending) is an actual viable number. We do this because the phrase "fair share" is tossed around a lot but doesn't have any real world meaning attached to it. On the opposite side of the spectrum are those that have zero income. They are generally accepted to have 0% obligation to finance the Gov. That is reflective of the current tax code IMO. We simply can't talk about the obligations(fair share) of the rich, without understanding the obligation of everyone, even the poor(zero income earners). In this view then, the only thing limiting the Gov is the how much the other 99% can afford. In that, even if the rich were funding 99% of all the gov and that was their "fair share". The Gov still wouldn't have unlimited funds, (even though the rich do) because the "poor" have limited funds and can only afford so much before the taxes become oppressive. That is as long as the bottom 99% are responsible for at least 1% of the budget.

    I feel this is reflection of how people generally think on the
    issue. They see the rich as a source of unlimited funds. So that
    whatever the Gov says is a priority, the rich must pay for it.. somehow.

    Even though I feel I am about to destroy the viability of this view as remotely valid or responsible.

    As a bonus, question. Under those hypothetical conditions, what % of responsibility and obligation do the top 1% have? Should they pay 100% of the budget simply because they can? (keep in mind the hypo).

    It is my opinion that even if the top 1% could afford 100% that would be a denial of every other persons responsibility to support the state for which they too derive gain. Such a notion would be an effectual enslavement of the few to serve the masses. A notion I find highly un-American.

    Inherent limitations
    Clearly the Above is a ridiculous way to run anything. Short the mythical infinite money supply. The rich could only ever supply so much, and our big hearts would no doubt out give it. Suppose we were to say...

    1) The "fair share of the rich(top 1%) is 100%.
    Health-care for all is the top priority, and will cost eleventy billion dollars to pay for.
    Therefore the rich must come up with eleventy billion dollars.

    No matter how we slice the pie, we will get what is called a budget. It is unrealistic to set priorities and then expect the money to appear to pay for it.

    Transition to reality.

    In the hypothetical world, unlimited cash by the top 1% means that the gov would be able to finance everything it had the authority and obligation to take care of and have a surplus each year to boot Alas, this is reality, and there is no such thing as infinite money. Having answered the question of responsibility of the top 1% lets see how far we can get applying it to a real world, where the top 1% don't have unlimited cash.

    In regards to #2
    This is the main thrust of the debate, but it is painfully simple. How much of the fruit of their labors should the top 1% be obligated to pay? How much is their fair share?

    It is my opinion that it is immoral for the state to take more from a mans work, then the man is able to use for himself. So the Gov taking more than 50% is patently immoral. This would be to ,in effect, make the man a slave to the state. This makes the amount of money irrelevant. No wo/man has the obligation to pay the gov more than 50% of their income.


    The Point
    The national debate is phrased in such a way as to say the rich are not paying their fair share. This presents the perception that the rich should be expected to fund a % of the national budget. That perception ignores reality, and turns budgeting on it's head. Which leaves us with only the debate of how much is the maximum any person regardless of amount of income, should be forced to pay.

    The poll is for general opinion, but I look forward to the reasoning behind it as well.

    DEBATE!

    I will judge the results based on my new invention.
    The Generaly obedientiary varying rate a person earns -inator
    or
    Gov-rape-inator
    for short.
    To serve man.

  2. #2
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    98
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    1) Fair share of the total Gov spending.
    Oh goody! An unlimited budget!

    2) Fair share of taxes paid on income.
    Congratulations on your success! Now give up a chunk of your "hard earned" rewards!

    Which do you think fair share refers to, or should refer to?
    I really intend to stay On Topic as much as possible (and may not have much time to put forth) but here is an open ended question that I cannot skip. I think the CONCEPT of Income Tax is ridiculous. I don't outright object to the government, duty, or the amount, simply the manner in which it is levied. I agree with Property Tax, Gas Tax, Sales Tax (as long as necessities are excluded), but Income Tax is unjust and bordering on immoral in my opinion. I most agree with taxes that are able to be chosen, even if it would be exceptionally difficult to avoid. Sales Tax can be chosen, but you have to sacrifice some purchases. Gas Tax can be avoided, IF you have alternate means of transportation. Property Tax is a little different, it would be practically impossible to avoid completely, but also is most inherent to a geographical government, and can be easily avoided in excess.

    While I wish the function of Gv was more efficient, I support the concept of "Duty to SUPPORT Government" (which is not necessarily financial, but that is a different thread). So if Income Taxes are eliminated the funds would "need" to be generated elsewhere. Raise previously mentioned Taxes? Create new Tax (as long as it is able to be "chosen")?

    -----

    Returning to OP, that Income Taxes are part of the Tax basis, I prefer to look at this from a different point of view. I see that EVERYONE has a duty to support the government and in equal amounts, ideally as small as individually necessary, but I see up to 40% TOTAL TAXATION (relative to income) as being within reason. I definitely agree over 50% TOTAL TAXATION is outright wrong, even immoral, but approaching that barrier I see being reasonable, IF NECESSARY.

    Now I see it is definitely fair to cut some slack for the Poor. For whatever reason they have not benefitted AS MUCH as the Not-Poor. I see it as fair to apply that in varying shades up the scale, ideally using statistical models of standard deviations. Therefore the Poor pay lower taxes, but as a CHARITY reduction to their duty, due to their circumstances. Opposing the view that the rich pay more, which of course is relative and therefore still true, but greatly different in perception.

    I also believe that the Rich (highest standard deviation) have been successful due to the system of protections Gv has in place. From Military, to Police, Fire Department, and even FDA and EPA. The Poor (lowest standard deviation) gain benefit from the exact same system as well as additional sources like welfare. But the total VALUE of benefits the Poor receive is a fraction of what the Rich have gained, in effect BECAUSE they are Rich. If these systems were not in place the Rich would have to put them in place for themselves to be succesful. Just look at the vast scale of additional expenses that are more effective when resources are pooled through Gv.

    -----

    I personally believe in the natural approach to almost everything including economics. Let natural (as opposed to artificial) situations and interactions happen as much as possible. I believe that automatically leads to Commerce and Capitalism. However, Capitalism is naturally based on greed and can easily oppose the "good of the People". Therefore the People need to sometimes put enough Artificial restrictions in place to protect the People. These Restrictions require inforcement (OSHA, EPA, FDA, and ultimately Military) and therefore funding. Some can be internally funded (OSHA), but many cannot (Military).

    This Natural approach is deeply tied to economic incentives. Structure the incentives naturally and FAIRLY for the best results. The concept of Income Tax yields some really goofy artificial incentives and enforcement, hence my dislike. Proper incentives allow for free will and choice, even if the choice is clearly one sided. Income Tax does create a source of dis-incentive to excell, however it is usually offset by the actual success. Property Tax creates a disincentive to own additional property, or excessively expensive property. Which can easily be avoided even by the Rich, but it is unlikely they will choose to avoid it.


    It is my opinion that even if the top 1% could afford 100% that would be a denial of every other persons responsibility to support the state for which they too derive gain. Such a notion would be an effectual enslavement of the few to serve the masses. A notion I find highly un-American.
    I agree!


    It is my opinion that it is immoral for the state to take more from a mans work, then the man is able to use for himself. So the Gov taking more than 50% is patently immoral. This would be to ,in effect, make the man a slave to the state. This makes the amount of money irrelevant. No wo/man has the obligation to pay the gov more than 50% of their income.
    I agree again. Which for me anyway is not limited to Income Tax, but TOTAL Taxation.

    I will judge the results based on my new invention.
    The Generaly obedientiary varying rate a person earns -inator
    or
    Gov-rape-inator
    for short.
    All men SHOULD have equal opportunity to live their life to the fullest. Be as happy, productive, carefree, and content as possible. The trouble is we are NOT created equal.

  3. #3
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    6,893
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Pikatore
    Property Tax is a little different, it would be practically impossible to avoid completely, but also is most inherent to a geographical government, and can be easily avoided in excess.
    Property Taxes are not so straight forward. My father is a farmer and I come from farming intensive communities. Farming necessitates one to have tillable land. Owning the property is part of your business and taxes on the land are an added expense. Now consider the scenario where the scarcity of farmland drives up the value of each acre, but the your yields and prices received remain stagnant. Property taxes can seriously cut into your income.

    Consider also, that many counties use property taxes as a primary means of income, particularly in funding schools. It is now the case that there are fewer farmers and those farmer are older. The children in those counties are going to schools funded by a small percentage of the population who have very little to no stake in that school, while the parents who benefit pay very little towards actually supporting that school.

    How is that fair?

  4. #4
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,399
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    I tagged 30%. That is real tax mind you, not a rate that then gets factored and exceptioned out to something lower.

    Really, the lower it is the better, but for me 30% is about the upper limit of what should be needed.

    Of course I think there are times for exceptions, great wars or other very significant struggles.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  5. #5
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    447
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    I didn't vote because there is no such thing as a fair percentage. The only truly fair way to determine one's fair share is to divide the money needed by the population and issue everyone a bill for that amount. But some of the poorest wouldn't be able to pay it.

    A slightly less fair but more fair than the current system option would be the fair tax. Put a 15% sales tax on everything. No exceptions. The more you buy, the more you pay. The rich would then pay much more than the poor (which they already do) but at least they wouldn't be able to deduct anything. The downside is the rich would actually be paying less than they do now which would cause mass heart attacks among the hypocritical rich redistribution of wealth folks. (Though that may not be seen as a negative by everyone.)

    But back to the OP. In one scenario you assume the rich have an unlimited income. If this were true the percentage required to run the government would be immeasurably small (what is infinity/$3.7 trillion?) So in that case what would be the difference?

    In reality however all of the combined wealth of the top 1% wouldn't even come close to beginning to even consider making a dent in the budget. So it really doesn't matter how you answer the question it won't make a difference. The real question should be: By how much should the government reduce the budget/deficit/debt? I'd say the answer is at least $1.6 trillion so the budget would at least be balanced for this year. But I don't think I will ever see a balanced budget in my life time. Pretty sad.

  6. #6
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    87
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    I voted 40%, but with a great deal of "but..."

    The issue with taxes, especially in America, is the red tape.

    For instance, the internet is currently rife with articles which declare that 47% of Americans don't pay Federal income tax.

    That's actually false. What's actually going on is that tax credits are reducing the Federal income taxes to 0% or less for 47% of Americans. 'Or, it would, if 100% of 47% of Americans filed their taxes and did so while claiming every possible tax credit, which we can be sure doesn't happen.

    Federal taxes on capital gains are 15%. So while an NBA player might be paying the highest tax bracket (~35%), a rich man who only earns income via passive means (i.e., real estate, stocks and bonds, etc.), has an effective Federal income tax of 15%, which is close to the Federal income tax rate for the poor in America.

    Corporate taxes in America are ridiculous. I couldn't begin to point out all the red tape without my head exploding. A lot of companies, specifically oil companies, in America literally pay 0% corporate taxes for one legally binding reason or another.

    If you own the house, you gotta paint it. The top 10% of income earners in America own ~70% of American assets (with all the technical considerations, who knows how much they *actually* own?).

    The top 10% have the best lawyers, the best accountants, the best real estate agents, the best doctors, the best medical care, and generally the best of everything in the United States of America, and therefore the best of everything in the World. Why shouldn't their burden be higher than the poor? If you're black and poor in America, your life expectancy is similar to a Russian's in the former Soviet Union (~55 years of age). That's about 20 years less than the average American. Would any of you be willing to take on higher taxes if it almost guaranteed that you would live 20 years longer? Of course you would.

    So, my actual answer to this poll is that this poll is irrelevant. It doesn't begin to quantify the minutiae of the tax system, in either America or, in all likelihood, any other Country in the world.

    The only thing we know is that Americans like social services (SSI, SSDI, SS, welfare, Medicare, Medicaid, ad nauseam), and yet, are prone to fits when they're asked to give up their tax breaks.

    That's the problem, really: It's not hard to balance a budget if all the citizens are willing to pay the price to do so, the rich included and most especially.

    I voted 40%, though, as a flat rate. 40% taxes on all income with complete contempt for any of the other thousands of considerations.

    If you own the house, you gotta pay for it.

  7. #7
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    447
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Mordecai View Post
    I voted 40%, but with a great deal of "but..."

    The issue with taxes, especially in America, is the red tape.

    For instance, the internet is currently rife with articles which declare that 47% of Americans don't pay Federal income tax.

    That's actually false. What's actually going on is that tax credits are reducing the Federal income taxes to 0% or less for 47% of Americans. 'Or, it would, if 100% of 47% of Americans filed their taxes and did so while claiming every possible tax credit, which we can be sure doesn't happen.

    Federal taxes on capital gains are 15%. So while an NBA player might be paying the highest tax bracket (~35%), a rich man who only earns income via passive means (i.e., real estate, stocks and bonds, etc.), has an effective Federal income tax of 15%, which is close to the Federal income tax rate for the poor in America.

    Corporate taxes in America are ridiculous. I couldn't begin to point out all the red tape without my head exploding. A lot of companies, specifically oil companies, in America literally pay 0% corporate taxes for one legally binding reason or another.

    If you own the house, you gotta paint it. The top 10% of income earners in America own ~70% of American assets (with all the technical considerations, who knows how much they *actually* own?).

    The top 10% have the best lawyers, the best accountants, the best real estate agents, the best doctors, the best medical care, and generally the best of everything in the United States of America, and therefore the best of everything in the World. Why shouldn't their burden be higher than the poor? If you're black and poor in America, your life expectancy is similar to a Russian's in the former Soviet Union (~55 years of age). That's about 20 years less than the average American. Would any of you be willing to take on higher taxes if it almost guaranteed that you would live 20 years longer? Of course you would.

    So, my actual answer to this poll is that this poll is irrelevant. It doesn't begin to quantify the minutiae of the tax system, in either America or, in all likelihood, any other Country in the world.

    The only thing we know is that Americans like social services (SSI, SSDI, SS, welfare, Medicare, Medicaid, ad nauseam), and yet, are prone to fits when they're asked to give up their tax breaks.

    That's the problem, really: It's not hard to balance a budget if all the citizens are willing to pay the price to do so, the rich included and most especially.

    I voted 40%, though, as a flat rate. 40% taxes on all income with complete contempt for any of the other thousands of considerations.

    If you own the house, you gotta pay for it.
    Man am I glad you're not in charge. 40%? Really? You think the problem is that we're undertaxed? Not that the government overspends? And you think that taxes pay for lawyers, accountants, real estate agents, doctors, and medical care? Not the last time I checked. So remind me why they should pay more taxes because the use more services that aren't even paid for by taxes. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that.

    Also, not saying it isn't so, but could you show where any company, and specifically any oil company pays zero corporate taxes. I would be interested in knowing how they get away with that.

  8. #8
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    87
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    Man am I glad you're not in charge. 40%? Really? You think the problem is that we're undertaxed? ants, real estate agents, doctoNot that the government overspends? And you think that taxes pay for lawyers, accountrs, and medical care? Not the last time I checked. So remind me why they should pay more taxes because the use more services that aren't even paid for by taxes. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that.

    Also, not saying it isn't so, but could you show where any company, and specifically any oil company pays zero corporate taxes. I would be interested in knowing how they get away with that.
    I'm not quite clear on how to quote specific parts of one's post and I didn't find the read-me on ODN particularly helpful, so anyone who knows how to quote small portions of another's post a time, please let me know what I need to do.



    You wrote: "Man am I glad you're not in charge. 40%? Really? You think the problem is that we're undertaxed?"



    Me: Oh, good. A response worth noting always begins with an ad hominem.



    You wrote: "Not that the government overspends?"



    Me: If the entire American government shut down right now and stayed completely shut down for the next 10 years, the American debt still wouldn't vanish. The problem isn't spending; the problem is revenue. Taxes account for revenue.



    You wrote: "And you think that taxes pay for lawyers, accountrs, and medical care? Not the last time I checked."



    Me: Since that isn't what I wrote, I'm going to ignore that sentence.



    You wrote: "So remind me why they should pay more taxes because the use more services that aren't even paid for by taxes. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that."



    Me: The services they receive, whether they pay for it or not, are due in part to the fact that they receive them as American citizens who own the majority of the assets in this Country. If they didn't own the majority of the assets in this Country, they wouldn't be receiving the benefits they receive, paid for out-of-pocket or otherwise. 'Especially since they receive the greatest extent of tax breaks and deductibles.

    http://tinyurl.com/3ez66dm

    If you own the house, you gotta paint it.



    You wrote: "Also, not saying it isn't so, but could you show where any company, and specifically any oil company pays zero corporate taxes. I would be interested in knowing how they get away with that."



    Me: Tax breaks, bro-ski.

    Those same tax breaks, whatever class receives them, amount to ~$1.1 trillion every year in America. (Same source as above; all information provided in the source may be independently verified.)

    http://tinyurl.com/yhypx7k

    There has been a startling headline appearing all over American media: ~47% of all Americans don't pay Federal income taxes!

    That's false, of course.

    What that actually means is that tax rebates of one kind or another essentially dropped the amount owed to the Federal government to 0%. Similar kinds of rules apply to corporations, such as GE, who owed absolutely no Federal corporate taxes.

    Oh, and by the way, the last time taxes were this low in the United States, She had just won World War II.

    The problem isn't that we're being over-taxed. The problem is that we, most especially the rich, aren't being taxed enough to keep alive the programs we all think are important.

    Medicare is the fastest rising cost in the United States because of the Baby Boomer generation. The problem isn't "out-of-control spending," but rather spending on the old people.

    Unless you're suggesting that we start letting old people die (note that I didn't accuse you of suggesting as much), the real key is ensuring increases in revenue, not in spending reduction.

    For the record, I think most of the problem is that ~2% of Americans have witnessed their taxes decrease dramatically over the last 50 years, while they have literally quadrupled their wealth over the last 30 years.

    The top marginal income tax rate in America before President Reagan was ~70%. By the end of President Reagan's term (and the collapse of the stock market), top marginal income tax rates in America were 28%. That's a 40% reduction in marginal income tax rates in 8 years.

    As mentioned previously, capital gain income taxes are only 15%, which includes all passive income, the means by which the rich claim their income, in the majority. I notice that you ignored that in your response.

  9. #9
    Super Moderator

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Louisiana
    Posts
    9,148
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    So, my actual answer to this poll is that this poll is irrelevant. It doesn't begin to quantify the minutiae of the tax system, in either America or, in all likelihood, any other Country in the world.
    The point of my poll was to boil taxes down to their most simple.
    Taxes are a way of collecting the amount that is seen as "appropriate". So it isn't about the "how" (or taxes) it is about the "what"(as in
    what the taxes are suppsed to do.

    As it is our tax code is a joke, that enables washington to be corrupt. That fact is for another thread.


    This thread is addressing the bottom line. People have an income that is a real number. say $100.00. If the top 1% bring in that money
    how much is "their fair share" that the taxes should be used to collect?

    Now you said 40%, so you are saying that the top 1% should give/be charged/have taken from them... 40cents on every dollar that they earn.

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    The top 10% have the best lawyers, the best accountants, the best real estate agents, the best doctors, the best medical care, and generally the best of everything in the United States of America, and therefore the best of everything in the World. Why shouldn't their burden be higher than the poor?
    While it is relevant to the discussion as to what the poors obligation to supporting the gov is.
    It really isn't about why the rich should pay more than the poor.

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    If you own the house, you gotta paint it. The top 10% of income earners in America own ~70% of American assets (with all the technical considerations, who knows how much they *actually* own?).
    I have a real problem with this analogy because the rich do not "own" the poor.
    Yet it is services to the poor that make up a large portion of the debt.

    so, while I agree with the anology for things like roads, police, judicialsystem, fire fighters, and military.
    I do not agree with it in areas of welfair, foodstamps, public housing, schools etc.

    The reason is, feeding your neighbor is nothing like painting your house.

    So unless you are willing to say that the rich actually own the poor, then there is no obligation to "paint" them as well.


    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    Unless you're suggesting that we start letting old people die (note that I didn't accuse you of suggesting as much), the real key is ensuring increases in revenue, not in spending reduction.
    The main problem I have with this, is that I have no responsibility for your life. I am not responsible for keeping you alive in any way.
    Now, I feel that I have a moral obligation to do what I can to see to your well being, but that is not a "responsibility".

    So, while it may be very tragic that you die because you could not afford to pay for X. That does not translate into giving you the right to
    take the money necessary to pay for X.

    As this thread is about the "fair share" or the "obligation and responsibility", it has nothing to do with the services. Say for example we all agreed that the "fair share" of the rich was 40%, and that turned out to not be enough to pay for all medical costs of old people.. then too bad, people are going to die and that is just life. And no wrong is done by the rich because they fulfill their obligations.

    As I said in the OP, it is an unreasonable and unrealistic position to hold that the rich should fund a certain percent of federal spending. Because one can not set priorities and expect the funding for it to simply appear.



    ---finally on debt
    off topic

    Debt only exists because of over spending. If it would take 50 years to pay off our current debt, if our spending were cut to zero. That only highlights the excessive spending of the past. Because spending more than you make, is irresponsible. The problem, and the cause for any debt is therefore irresponsibility and spending beyond your means.
    The only time income can be the blame, is when a project that is desired but does not exist is not funded. So we can blame income for say.. not having a man on mars already. Because if the income were available, we would probably have done that.

    /off topic

    back to the point of the thread.
    This thread is not about the reason for the national debt. The point is to provide a back drop for which we can decide our priorities. Because we have to agree first to what our financial obligation to the gov is, before we can go spending the money provided by that obligation.



    Sorry if I missed anything.
    To serve man.

  10. #10
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    447
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Mordecai View Post
    I'm not quite clear on how to quote specific parts of one's post and I didn't find the read-me on ODN particularly helpful, so anyone who knows how to quote small portions of another's post a time, please let me know what I need to do.
    You need to wrap the quoted text in square brackets with the word 'quote' in the one preceding the quote and '/quote' in the one following it. There is also a button on the toolbar above your text box to wrap selected text in quote tags. It's directly to the right of the 'insert video' button.

    What is going on here?

    You wrote: "Man am I glad you're not in charge. 40%? Really? You think the problem is that we're undertaxed?"

    Me: Oh, good. A response worth noting always begins with an ad hominem.
    Please understand the substantial difference between an ad hominem which is not demonstrated above and a question, which is.

    You wrote: "Not that the government overspends?"

    Me: If the entire American government shut down right now and stayed completely shut down for the next 10 years, the American debt still wouldn't vanish. The problem isn't spending; the problem is revenue. Taxes account for revenue.
    You're right, shutting down the government won't pay for the debt. But cutting spending to a point to where revenue is greater than expenditures will.

    You wrote: "So remind me why they should pay more taxes because the use more services that aren't even paid for by taxes. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around that."

    Me: The services they receive, whether they pay for it or not, are due in part to the fact that they receive them as American citizens who own the majority of the assets in this Country. If they didn't own the majority of the assets in this Country, they wouldn't be receiving the benefits they receive, paid for out-of-pocket or otherwise. 'Especially since they receive the greatest extent of tax breaks and deductibles.
    So they should pay more because they're more successful even if they don't actually use more government than someone who pays less? After all taxes are to pay for the things the government is supposed to be doing, are they not?

    If you own the house, you gotta paint it.
    Yea, I think you said that already.

    You wrote: "Also, not saying it isn't so, but could you show where any company, and specifically any oil company pays zero corporate taxes. I would be interested in knowing how they get away with that."
    I hope you'll excuse me if I summarize the rest of your argument. If I get the summary wrong please don't hesitate to correct me.

    The remainder of your argument seems to be that if we were taxed more we would be out of this mess. Let's see if that's valid shall we? As I posted in another thread:

    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    If you took every dollar of profit from all of the Fortune 500 companies; and all of the money from all of the 400 billionaires in America plus the next 100 almost billionaires; and took every dollar over $250,000 from the 2,238,800 households that make that much; plus every dollar made by every athlete in the NBA, NFL, MLB, PGA, NHL, and NASCAR; and every dollar ever made from the Star Wars movies and all it merchandising, etc; and every dollar ever paid for Super Bowl advertising; plus recovered all the money needed to fight the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2010; all of that money combined wouldn't even run the government this year let alone start eating away at the debt.

    How to feed your family on $10 billion/day
    So again I ask, is the problem that we are under taxed or that we over spend?

  11. #11
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,399
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    If you took every dollar of profit from all of the Fortune 500 companies; and all of the money from all of the 400 billionaires in America plus the next 100 almost billionaires; and took every dollar over $250,000 from the 2,238,800 households that make that much; plus every dollar made by every athlete in the NBA, NFL, MLB, PGA, NHL, and NASCAR; and every dollar ever made from the Star Wars movies and all it merchandising, etc; and every dollar ever paid for Super Bowl advertising; plus recovered all the money needed to fight the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2010; all of that money combined wouldn't even run the government this year let alone start eating away at the debt.

    How to feed your family on $10 billion/day
    And its a good thing we don't run the country using randomly anecdotal revenue and instead simply use basic taxation.

    The GDP of the us in 2009 was about 14 trillion and has gone up a bit since then, so our budget of 3.8 is about 27% of our national income. About what folks here seem to think is a relatively fair taxation rate. That is if we actually were covering that whole bill. Instead were only hitting up about 60% of it because our taxes are actually pretty low % wise compared to a lot of other countries with advanced levels of social and civil service.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  12. #12
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    447
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    And its a good thing we don't run the country using randomly anecdotal revenue and instead simply use basic taxation.
    It's quite a bit more than just anecdotal. It's a direct refutation of the continued assertion that the financial cesspool in which our country is quickly finding itself is a result of under-taxing the richest in the country. The example shows that even if you go beyond taxation and just outright steal all the wealth this country has you still wouldn't be able to satisfy the insatiable lust for money that our federal government has.

    The GDP of the us in 2009 was about 14 trillion and has gone up a bit since then, so our budget of 3.8 is about 27% of our national income. About what folks here seem to think is a relatively fair taxation rate.
    Well then I guess I'm not a folk. I see a real problem with our taxation rate. Specifically, this is what I see as wrong. We have a huge population of people that don't pay any taxes at all. In fact there are some people who get refunds that equal more than the amount they paid in. Then you have the rich. They get taxed at whatever rate and while it stings it really doesn't affect their daily life. They have lots of money and can afford it.

    Somewhere in between you have people like me. I make enough to make a decent living but I'm far from rich. When I get my paycheck I see a real impact on the amount of money I bring home. And I'm not getting it back at the end of the year. Add to that the sales tax, excise tax, luxury tax, gas tax, and every other tax the government can think to invent and when all is said and done I pay a pretty substantial and noticeable amount of my earnings to the federal government who couldn't manage a lemonade stand let alone an entire country.

    If it was well managed I might not have an issue with it. Especially if there was some hope of actually reducing our budget deficits and our national debt. This is not happening so you'll have to live with my bitching or put me on ignore.

    That is if we actually were covering that whole bill. Instead were only hitting up about 60% of it because our taxes are actually pretty low % wise compared to a lot of other countries with advanced levels of social and civil service.
    Once again, I don't believe we are under-taxed. We over-spend.

  13. #13
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Chicago IL
    Posts
    1,241
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Everyone pays the same 30% all around.

  14. #14
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    87
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    The point of my poll was to boil taxes down to their most simple. Taxes are a way of collecting the amount that is seen as "appropriate". So it isn't about the "how" (or taxes) it is about the "what"(as in
    what the taxes are suppsed to do.


    I understand completely.

    The only reason I mentioned all of that information was to point out what you write below:



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    As it is our tax code is a joke, that enables washington to be corrupt. That fact is for another thread.


    I couldn't agree more if you paid me.

    The only reason I mention it is to provide a bit of contrast for the amount of taxes collected today as opposed to the amount of taxes collected in "utopia." My estimation of what "utopia" should be like is, in part, determined by what little I actually know of the tax code and how it affects this Country.

    If I mention something that isn't really relevant, feel free to gloss over it.

    I'll eventually take the hint.


    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    This thread is addressing the bottom line. People have an income that is a real number. say $100.00. If the top 1% bring in that money how much is "their fair share" that the taxes should be used to collect?

    Now you said 40%, so you are saying that the top 1% should give/be charged/have taken from them... 40cents on every dollar that they earn.


    'Depends.

    I have a relatively decent understanding of the current tax code. 'At least, as relatively decent as an abysmal understanding of the tax code can be.

    That said, I don't have a great understanding of how much the rich actually avoid paying. As you mentioned, a lot of money just isn't paid.

    It depends in a large way on how much we need to spend. (More on that below.)

    The top 10% of the Country own ~70% of American assets. With that in mind, it's not unreasonable to ask that they're taxed a higher amount.

    With that said, if we could somehow collect the total taxes we ought to be collecting to match spending, then I would happily give the rich the lowest percentage possible.

    It's not about bleeding them dry or making them pay their fair share, since those are incredibly subjective concepts, anyway. It's about making the Country run smoothly.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    While it is relevant to the discussion as to what the poors obligation to supporting the gov is. It really isn't about why the rich should pay more than the poor.


    Right. It's about what the rich should be paying, not if they should be paying more than the poor, which would be semantic.

    What they own is a consideration, though, in determining what they should be paying.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    I have a real problem with this analogy because the rich do not "own" the poor. Yet it is services to the poor that make up a large portion of the debt.


    And it provides services, in the form of tax breaks, at the very least, to the rich.

    Some poor people are atheists, but that doesn't mean that their tax dollars absolutely shouldn't be used for churches.

    Most middle class workers don't apply for the tax breaks that the rich receive, and yet their tax dollars go toward supplementing those tax breaks for the rich, and vice versa on the taxes for the rich going toward programs for the poor and middle class.

    In other words, the entire system is interwoven. It is ultimately wrong to assume that one person should dictate how his or her tax dollars ought to be spent since everybody in this Country benefits in some way or another from everybody else's tax dollars.

    Ultimately, the question is to determine what extent the rich should be paying to maintain not just their own being, but ultimately the being of the Nation, i.e., the social contract, under which they obtained their wealth.

    In other words, the rich maintain their wealth, fairly on unfairly, because they are part of the social contract. If they were not part of the social contract, they wouldn't have the businesses required to create that wealth.

    So I think it is perfectly relevant to mention what is needed of the rich not just to maintain their own existence, but what is needed to maintain the prosperity of the Nation under which they made their fortunes. If the expanding lower class and shrinking middle class don't have any money, they can't consume the way the upper class needs them to to maintain their fortunes. I.e., when the lower or middle class suffers, it inevitable trickles up to the upper class.

    Everything is interwoven.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    so, while I agree with the anology for things like roads, police, judicialsystem, fire fighters, and military. I do not agree with it in areas of welfair, foodstamps, public housing, schools etc.


    Why would it be fair to allow the tax payer to dictate exactly where every one of his tax dollars go? That's exactly what the above means: It means dictating that since I, for instance, am an atheist, any of my tax dollars used to keep the churches tax free ought to be returned. I have never used Planned Parenthood, so all of my taxes that went toward that need to be returned, too. I've never been to New Jersey, so any of my taxes allocated toward the Federal funds they received for high-speed rail must also be returned. I have nothing to do with the military... You get the point. While you may certainly pick and poke at the anecdotes, I think the underlying point remains intact.

    Everybody benefits from everybody else's tax money. That's the nature of the social contract.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    The reason is, feeding your neighbor is nothing like painting your house.

    So unless you are willing to say that the rich actually own the poor, then there is no obligation to "paint" them as well.


    No, but I am saying that the rich benefit from the services of the poor, who clean their houses, cook their food, take out their trash, cook the food their lawyers eat, etc., etc. It's all interwoven and whether the rich mean to or not, they do benefit from the existence of the poor in this Country, not because they're poor, but because they, too, perform services, pay taxes, and consume.

    Again, this isn't about maintaining one's neighbor at the cost of another, but rather ensuring the competitive edge and continued prosperity of the Nation as a whole.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    The main problem I have with this, is that I have no responsibility for your life. I am not responsible for keeping you alive in any way.
    Now, I feel that I have a moral obligation to do what I can to see to your well being, but that is not a "responsibility".


    If I die, I stop consuming. If millions of Americans die because they don't have shelter, medical treatment, or food, they die, too, and they stop consuming and paying taxes.

    It's all interwoven.

    I can feel the charity issue about to brought up, so I'll address that rather quickly: It is true that the charities ease the burden of the tax payer in multiple ways, but if every benefit for the poor were slashed from every government budget, we'd return to an era where it would be more beneficial to create programs to make sure millions more Americans become consumers again.

    That said, I don't have any numbers regarding how many Americans require help, as opposed to those that don't and are just lazy, etc., etc., but I do know that there are millions of poor people in this Country and the number is growing. They are white, black, Muslim, atheist, and otherwise.

    That's a lot of people who can no longer consume as fast as they were. That's a lot of people who probably won't get the proper education to give the rich the workforce it needs to continue making money in this Country in the modern age and that list goes on, too.

    It other words, it benefits everybody, the rich included, to adhere to the social contract and make sure that the rising tide does, in fact, raise all boats.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    So, while it may be very tragic that you die because you could not afford to pay for X. That does not translate into giving you the right to take the money necessary to pay for X.

    As this thread is about the "fair share" or the "obligation and responsibility", it has nothing to do with the services. Say for example we all agreed that the "fair share" of the rich was 40%, and that turned out to not be enough to pay for all medical costs of old people.. then too bad, people are going to die and that is just life. And no wrong is done by the rich because they fulfill their obligations.

    As I said in the OP, it is an unreasonable and unrealistic position to hold that the rich should fund a certain percent of federal spending. Because one can not set priorities and expect the funding for it to simply appear.


    The Congress has the ability to tax as per Article 1, Sec. 8, Cla., 3.

    That is the social contract, the Constitution.

    The point is that this Nation exists for the "welfare" and "protection" of all its Citizens and that all its Citizens benefit from having formed and adhered to the social contract.

    If you don't believe that the rich are in any way connected to the poor or "obligated," then you necessary believe that the entire basis upon which the firefighters and police officers and military even exist is irrelevant.

    No man is an island. Everything is interwoven.



    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    /off topic
    back to the point of the thread.

    This thread is not about the reason for the national debt. The point is to provide a back drop for which we can decide our priorities. Because we have to agree first to what our financial obligation to the gov is, before we can go spending the money provided by that obligation.


    Part of determining a back drop for which we can decide our priorities is determining the extent to which taxes play a part in revenue and deficit reduction.

    I know I sound like a broken record, but everything is interwoven.

    Mind Trap, thank you for your welcome and for your assistance in helping me understand how to quote.

    I look forward to speaking more with you.

  15. #15
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,399
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    It's quite a bit more than just anecdotal. It's a direct refutation of the continued assertion that the financial cesspool in which our country is quickly finding itself is a result of under-taxing the richest in the country.
    Sorry but I see it as a deceptive and attention grabbing piece of sensationalism. Running the most prosperous nation on earth isn't an especially simple task and it takes significant amounts of work and money. Comparing it to super bowl adds, sports salaries and movies is silly. The simple fact is our country spends about 1/3 of its income through the public sector but because of the cyclical nature of the way money works its less than that in terms of economic activity.

    Well then I guess I'm not a folk. I see a real problem with our taxation rate. Specifically, this is what I see as wrong. We have a huge population of people that don't pay any taxes at all.
    That is because they don't earn enough money to have much left over after food and shelter etc... and if we tried taking their money all we would end up with is more people needing assistance from the government. Rich nations create very high costs of living, its one of the challenges you face in market economies.

    In fact there are some people who get refunds that equal more than the amount they paid in. Then you have the rich. They get taxed at whatever rate and while it stings it really doesn't affect their daily life. They have lots of money and can afford it.
    Ya, see that is the whole idea. You get the money from where it is available rather than trying to take blood from a stone. Personally I'm happy that my taxes have afforded me one of the best places on earth to live and when I make more than I need I don't begrudge chipping in for it.

    Somewhere in between you have people like me. I make enough to make a decent living but I'm far from rich. When I get my paycheck I see a real impact on the amount of money I bring home. And I'm not getting it back at the end of the year. Add to that the sales tax, excise tax, luxury tax, gas tax, and every other tax the government can think to invent and when all is said and done I pay a pretty substantial and noticeable amount of my earnings to the federal government who couldn't manage a lemonade stand let alone an entire country.
    And a lot of that money goes to the roads you drive on, the schools that educated you, the military that defends you, the hospitals that care prevent epidemics, the prisons to hold criminals, the police that patrol the streets, the workers who keep records, and to build a society where we try to take care of people who are down on their luck or unable to compete in such a vibrant and successful economy. That **** ain't free pall.

    The alternatives to taxation tend to be banditry, epidemics, corruption, endemic poverty, etc... That stuff is dirt cheap!

    If it was well managed I might not have an issue with it. Especially if there was some hope of actually reducing our budget deficits and our national debt. This is not happening so you'll have to live with my bitching or put me on ignore.
    I can handle your bitching but on a debate board I'll be forced to give you the facts none the less. If you want to live in a fairly clean, safe, and well run country, its going to cost you. If you want more a wild west libertarian kind of thing, you have to convince others they want it too.

    Once again, I don't believe we are under-taxed. We over-spend.
    There really isn't a significant difference.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  16. #16
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    87
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    You need to wrap the quoted text in square brackets with the word 'quote' in the one preceding the quote and '/quote' in the one following it. There is also a button on the toolbar above your text box to wrap selected text in quote tags. It's directly to the right of the 'insert video' button.


    Oh-ho! Thank you, sir. This is the first time I've used a quote feature like this and it's rather daunting.



    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    Please understand the substantial difference between an ad hominem which is not demonstrated above and a question, which is.


    You originally wrote: "Man am I glad you're not in charge."

    That's not a question, mate.

    No worries, I was just poking fun, anyway. It didn't detract from your point.

    (Just by the way, the actual income tax rate on the highest bracket is currently 35%, and the marginal income tax rate is 35%, so I'm not advocating anything extreme. That all includes irreverence to distinctions such as capital gains and payroll taxes and sales taxes and blah, blah, blah.)





    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    You're right, shutting down the government won't pay for the debt. But cutting spending to a point to where revenue is greater than expenditures will.


    You, sir, are good.

    More on this point below.



    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    So they should pay more because they're more successful even if they don't actually use more government than someone who pays less? After all taxes are to pay for the things the government is supposed to be doing, are they not?


    Yes. The government is, according to the Constitution, supposed to "promote the general welfare."

    (That's the Preamble, of course, but it's a good point. I like analyzing the Constitution, but since it's fairly obvious from Article I that the Congress has the enumerated power to "levy taxes," I don't think we need to spend too much time on that.)

    Furthermore, I do not think that they should pay more because they're more successful. I don't believing in punishing the wealthy because I don't believe in punishing myself.

    I do, however, believe in maintaining America in a civilized, compassionate, and reasonable way. That way does not include wantonly slashing spending because some Citizens feel they don't benefit from the social contract.

    I am open to any and all reasonable spending reduction measures, but that's not the point of this thread. ('Hat's off to MindTrap for reminding me. ;-)



    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    I hope you'll excuse me if I summarize the rest of your argument. If I get the summary wrong please don't hesitate to correct me.

    The remainder of your argument seems to be that if we were taxed more we would be out of this mess. Let's see if that's valid shall we? As I posted in another thread:


    You're surprised that a relatively small number of people don't own as much as the entire United States of America?

    That's not exactly a poignant point.

    I do know, however, that the tax rebates, tax deductibles, and tax breaks in effect right now costs the United States by ~$1.1 trillion a year. A YEAR!

    Everything is interwoven and that cost will be passed along to everybody when the United States, like Greece, receives a bad credit score and in turn has to suffer rising interest rates on, like, everything.

    To be clear, that number includes all tax cuts for all classes.

    I hope it is equally clear that all Americans should help shoulder the burden for making sure that America remains the economic superpower She has been since the 1870s.

    As also mentioned, I am open to any spending reductions that we can afford, but cutting all entitlements is only cutting a very small percentage off the total budget, and it alone will not do the job. (Excluding the fact that it's just wrong.)

    So we're going to need to raise taxes. The CBO said. The bipartisan committee appointed by President Obama said either raise taxes or starting cutting *a lot*. (It seemed to advocate what I advocate: A bit of both.)

    That said, the current tax rate, both actual income tax and marginal income tax, on the highest bracket is 35%. I think it should go up a little higher.

    As also noted, I would be willing to lower this percentage if it could be indicated the success of America could continue even in spite of doing so.

    So my answer is 40% as it looks. In a perfect world, maybe it would be 20%. I'm not sure because I don't live in a perfect world.

  17. #17
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    447
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    Sorry but I see it as a deceptive and attention grabbing piece of sensationalism.
    While it is certainly attention grabbing and sensational, I hardly see it as deceptive. It is making a simple point and you haven't actually refuted it.

    Running the most prosperous nation on earth isn't an especially simple task and it takes significant amounts of work and money.
    And yet we leave it to yahoos that have never run anything other than a campaign who spend significant amounts of the time for which we are paying running those campaigns so they can get reelected so the whole cycle can continue.

    Comparing it to super bowl adds, sports salaries and movies is silly.
    That's quite an oversimplification of what was presented. It's like saying Kennedy told a couple o' buddies over a brewski that he thought it'd be cool to launch tin can can at the man in the moon and next thing ya know they're playing golf in near zero gravity.

    That is because they don't earn enough money to have much left over after food and shelter etc... and if we tried taking their money all we would end up with is more people needing assistance from the government. Rich nations create very high costs of living, its one of the challenges you face in market economies.
    Thanks. I wasn't aware why some people don't pay taxes. I still don't understand the love affair with redistribution of wealth though.

    Ya, see that is the whole idea. You get the money from where it is available rather than trying to take blood from a stone. Personally I'm happy that my taxes have afforded me one of the best places on earth to live and when I make more than I need I don't begrudge chipping in for it.
    So the fact that the top tax payers already pay almost all of the taxes just ain't enough. We gotta suck those bastards dry. Get every dime out of 'em. All the while fight even one red cent of reductions in spending. Because that's been working so well for us.

    And a lot of that money goes to the roads you drive on, the schools that educated you, the military that defends you, the hospitals that care prevent epidemics, the prisons to hold criminals, the police that patrol the streets, the workers who keep records, and to build a society where we try to take care of people who are down on their luck or unable to compete in such a vibrant and successful economy. That **** ain't free pall.
    Well you've done it. You convinced me. I thought roads were built by the Keebler elves in their off time and that teachers and soldiers donated their time out of the kindness of their heart. You mean it takes actual real money to pay for these things? Well I'm turning in my library card and becoming a Democrat so I can join the good fight.

    The alternatives to taxation tend to be banditry, epidemics, corruption, endemic poverty, etc... That stuff is dirt cheap!
    Hey, I'm with you now, remember? I mean how could we possibly avoid becoming another Afghanistan if we didn't run trillion dollar deficits?

    I can handle your bitching but on a debate board I'll be forced to give you the facts none the less. If you want to live in a fairly clean, safe, and well run country, its going to cost you. If you want more a wild west libertarian kind of thing, you have to convince others they want it too.
    Well aside from the fact that the West wasn't actually all that wild I fail to see how Libertarian ideals necessitate that kind of world. You don't have to spend us into a whole from which we may never be able to dig ourselves out to not live in a toilet. And each government job added doesn't necessarily make us better off. To the contrary I am skeptical of every single one until I see a benefit for the greater good. Most laws passed and jobs added take away from our freedoms, not add to them.

    There really isn't a significant difference.
    Really? So if you were making, say $5,000/month and spending $7,500/month you wouldn't see a significant difference in continuing to overextend your credit vs. adopting a more modest lifestyle? Well since I'm now on your side I of course agree. But my former self would have said that the only way to get out of debt would be to decrease your obligations. My former self would have said you can't borrow yourself out of debt.

  18. #18
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    98
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by LagerHead View Post
    While it is certainly attention grabbing and sensational, I hardly see it as deceptive. It is making a simple point and you haven't actually refuted it.
    Perhaps it has not been shown to be a false statement, but the POINT it is making IS deceptive and HAS been refuted. You even responded to it. Just to make it easy for you here it is again.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    And its a good thing we don't run the country using randomly anecdotal revenue and instead simply use basic taxation.

    The GDP of the us in 2009 was about 14 trillion and has gone up a bit since then, so our budget of 3.8 is about 27% of our national income.
    -----

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    The point of my poll was to boil taxes down to their most simple.
    Taxes are a way of collecting the amount that is seen as "appropriate". So it isn't about the "how" (or taxes) it is about the "what"(as in
    what the taxes are suppsed to do.
    ....

    This thread is not about the reason for the national debt. The point is to provide a back drop for which we can decide our priorities. Because we have to agree first to what our financial obligation to the gov is, before we can go spending the money provided by that obligation.
    I once had a budgeting discussion with a commitee looking for a new meeting space. I had volunteered to "beat the street" to find alternatives, and inquired what the budget was. I was loudly told that a budget cannot be determined until cost options are found. I STRONGLY disagree. As long as Income is known (or can be projected) budgeting is based on the priorities of needs. There are always going to be needs that can't and don't make the cut (saving can and should be a budgeted priority, even/especially in Government). If the entire budget is willing to be spent on a meeting space then there are some great options, but it is still limited by Income. If {insert frivolous expense here} is more important than we need to find free meeting spaces (parks, members homes). The budget is NOT set by the options, the acceptible options are set by the Budget, which comes from INCOME.

    Therefore, we need to know what an appropriate "fair" contribution is to know what Income is. Then choose our priorities, War or Welfare (drastic oversimplification).

    ---------- Post added at 07:40 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:27 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    {Under Taxation vs. Over Spending}

    There really isn't a significant difference.
    Dang, I agreed with the rest but NOT this. There is not a significant difference when the comparison is purely relative. Al is taller than Bob, is the same as Bob is shorter than Al. Semantics and perspective but no SIGNIFICANT difference.

    However, taxation and spending are not relative to each other they are relative to budgeting.

    To say that we should send a manned mission to Pluto, is at this time Over Spending. To say that we cannot afford to defend our country from invasion would be Under Taxing. With a universe of gray area in between.

    There is an enormous significant difference. We need to determine what priorities we can afford first.
    All men SHOULD have equal opportunity to live their life to the fullest. Be as happy, productive, carefree, and content as possible. The trouble is we are NOT created equal.

  19. #19
    Super Moderator

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Louisiana
    Posts
    9,148
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    I couldn't agree more if you paid me.
    Well, as soon as I make it to that top 1% income level.. maybe I can test that claim

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    It's not about bleeding them dry or making them pay their fair share, since those are incredibly subjective concepts, anyway. It's about making the Country run smoothly.

    Then I fear you may be missing the point of the thread.
    The point of the thread is to nail down a real meaning to the term "fair share".

    I think your point is very valid. In that if it only took $1 to run the entire gov. Then the % of income that we consider
    "Fair share" would be very low indeed.

    However, the gov has no shortage of ideas and projects on which to spend tax payer money.
    So much so that the only limit to gov will be the "maximum accepted level of taxation".
    So that, if the people simply refuse to every pay more than 2% income, then the Gov can not be sustained passed that level.

    Now, I know you bring in the top 10%, but it is the top 1% that is generally targeted by the "fair share" talk.

    so statistics regarding the top 1% are the ones that are most relevant to the thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI

    Right. It's about what the rich should be paying, not if they should be paying more than the poor, which would be semantic.

    What they own is a consideration, though, in determining what they should be paying.
    I agree to an extent.
    However, my 50% ceiling (for my personal reasoning) has nothing to do with "what they own". I don't care if a U.S. citizen owned the entire
    world. 50% would be immoral and wrong.

    So, for me it works to a degree. the whole reason we will allow a higher tax on the rich is because they CAN afford a 20th car.
    while we don't tolerate a tax at all for someone who can't afford a bowl of ramen noodles(which are delicious I may add).

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    And it provides services, in the form of tax breaks, at the very least, to the rich.

    Some poor people are atheists, but that doesn't mean that their tax dollars absolutely shouldn't be used for churches.

    Most middle class workers don't apply for the tax breaks that the rich receive, and yet their tax dollars go toward supplementing those tax breaks for the rich, and vice-versa on the taxes for the rich going toward programs for the poor and middle class.

    In other words, the entire system is interwoven. It is ultimately wrong to assume that one person should dictate how his or her tax dollars ought to be spent since everybody in this Country benefits in some way or another from everybody else's tax dollars.

    Ultimately, the question is to determine what extent the rich should be paying to maintain not just their own being, but ultimately the being of the Nation, i.e., the social contract, under which they obtained their wealth.

    In other words, the rich maintain their wealth, fairly on unfairly, because they are part of the social contract. If they were not part of the social contract, they wouldn't have the businesses required to create that wealth.

    So I think it is perfectly relevant to mention what is needed of the rich not just to maintain their own existence, but what is needed to maintain the prosperity of the Nation under which they made their fortunes. If the expanding lower class and shrinking middle class don't have any money, they can't consume the way the upper class needs them to to maintain their fortunes. I.e., when the lower or middle class suffers, it inevitable trickles up to the upper class.

    Everything is interwoven.
    The social contract that we are all under, is the obligation to protect and respect each others rights. That is the only thing that is necessary for the rich to become so.
    The rich have no obligation to build a road to your house, because that would help them make more money in the long run.

    The point about tax dollars to churches, is wrong. As America shouldn't be giving tax money to any church nor taxing them in any way.

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    Why would it be fair to allow the tax payer to dictate exactly where every one of his tax dollars go? That's exactly what the above means: It means dictating that since I, for instance, am an atheist, any of my tax dollars used to keep the churches tax free ought to be returned. I have never used Planned Parenthood, so all of my taxes that went toward that need to be returned, too. I've never been to New Jersey, so any of my taxes allocated toward the Federal funds they received for high-speed rail must also be returned. I have nothing to do with the military... You get the point. While you may certainly pick and poke at the anecdotes, I think the underlying point remains intact.

    Everybody benefits from everybody else's tax money. That's the nature of the social contract.
    I get your point, however I'm not saying to pick and choose what our tax dollars should go to.
    I'm pointing out the difference between what we have obligations to, and what we simply benefit from.

    For example, I may benefit from supporting a homeless man, in that as long as I am giving him money, the chance of him robbing my house
    will go down. (hence I benefit)

    That however, does not mean I am obligated to support the homeless man.

    So, there is an important distinction between benefit, and responsibility. You are right that we all benefit from each other in some way, but I don't see that as relevant to obligation or our social contract.


    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    If I die, I stop consuming. If millions of Americans die because they don't have shelter, medical treatment, or food, they die, too, and they stop consuming and paying taxes.

    It's all interwoven.
    Such things are irrelevant to obligation. I have no obligation to pay your medical bills, simply because you buy my hamburgers every Sunday while all the good Christians are at church getting more Jesus (That is supposed to be funny)


    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAE
    It other words, it benefits everybody, the rich included, to adhere to the social contract and make sure that the rising tide does, in fact, raise all boats.
    That is simply not the social contract of America. That is the social contract of communism.
    The obligation we have to each other (and thus social contract) is to protect,insure, and respect each others rights. We are not responsible for each others prosperity
    Rather our prosperity will be possible because we respect and protect each others rights.

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    The point is that this Nation exists for the "welfare" and "protection" of all its Citizens and that all its Citizens benefit from having formed and adhered to the social contract.
    General welfare in the const means nothing like what it is used today.
    Todays understanding of it, would justify taking money from the rich in order to make every person a millionaire (if the rich had enough money and would still be equal or greater so than those they gave the money too), because the "general welfare" would be served.

    Question to opponent.Wouldn't you agree that the founders never intended "general welfare" to do or justify the above example?

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    If you don't believe that the rich are in any way connected to the poor or "obligated," then you necessary believe that the entire basis upon which the firefighters and police officers and military even exist is irrelevant.
    The military is part of the const, and is specifically part of the social contract. It has nothing to do with the poor, or being connected to them economically. It has to do with our obligation to protect each others rights. Same with the police, which are specifically supposed to protect from citizens who violate the rights of others, and to enforce our rights.

    As for fire fighters, they are supported locally (as I understand it). So bill gates has nothing to do with the fire department down the road from me. ... unless of course he lives down the street from me.

    Quote Originally Posted by MORDECAI
    Part of determining a back drop for which we can decide our priorities is determining the extent to which taxes play a part in revenue and deficit reduction.
    Money doesn't appear based on need. Therefore priorities are inherently what is meant by ordering what things will be paid for with the money on hand.
    If you do not set a limit to the amount that is right to tax, or a maximum. Then the "rich" will quickly be found to be obligated to give a vast majority of their money to those that really "need" it.

    I differ to mehkael's example
    Quote Originally Posted by MEHKAEL
    I once had a budgeting discussion with a commitee looking for a new meeting space. I had volunteered to "beat the street" to find alternatives, and inquired what the budget was. I was loudly told that a budget cannot be determined until cost options are found. I STRONGLY disagree. As long as Income is known (or can be projected) budgeting is based on the priorities of needs. There are always going to be needs that can't and don't make the cut (saving can and should be a budgeted priority, even/especially in Government). If the entire budget is willing to be spent on a meeting space then there are some great options, but it is still limited by Income. If {insert frivolous expense here} is more important than we need to find free meeting spaces (parks, members homes). The budget is NOT set by the options, the acceptable options are set by the Budget, which comes from INCOME.

    Therefore, we need to know what an appropriate "fair" contribution is to know what Income is. Then choose our priorities, War or Welfare (drastic oversimplification).
    @ MORDECAI.
    glad to be of help regarding the quotes, I look forward to your many years of addiction to ODN
    To serve man.

  20. #20
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    447
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Mind Trapped by "Fair Share of taxes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Mehkael View Post
    Perhaps it has not been shown to be a false statement, but the POINT it is making IS deceptive and HAS been refuted. You even responded to it. Just to make it easy for you here it is again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    And its a good thing we don't run the country using randomly anecdotal revenue and instead simply use basic taxation.

    The GDP of the us in 2009 was about 14 trillion and has gone up a bit since then, so our budget of 3.8 is about 27% of our national income.
    First, how is it deceptive? It makes the point that soaking the rich will not get us out of the hole we are in. It uses hyperbole to demonstrate it but as far as I know its numbers were correct. It says that even if you go way beyond increasing their taxes you still won't even start to dig out of the hole.

    Second, how does posting a stat about the GDP refute the above? The only thing it does is show what our budget is as a percentage of GDP without addressing the fact that this year alone we will see a budget deficit in excess of $1.5 trillion. And how is that deficit going to be paid for? By increasing our debt. Borrowing our way out of debt.

    Meanwhile we are over $14 trillion in debt, the IMF has issued a strong rebuke on our finances stating that the U.S. is the only advanced economy in the world that will increase its fiscal deficit this year despite a recovering economy. Standard and Poors also decreased its rating of U.S. Treasury securities from stable to negative indicating that another lowering may be in our very near future. As if that wasn't enough, the the largest bond fund holder, PIMCO, announced that it was getting rid of all of its holdings of U.S. debt.

    It seems to me, the IMF, S&P, and PIMCO that the country is headed in the wrong direction. I think it has been shown that taxing the crap out of anyone or for that matter everyone is not the solution. Borrowing more gets you out of debt the same way that digging more gets you out of a hole. I fail to see the disconnect here but some people still don't get it.

 

 
Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •