General Question

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

Why would abolishing the Federal income tax be a bad idea?

Asked by SquirrelEStuff (9121points) April 21st, 2009

With all the other taxes we pay, the government would have no shortage of funds coming in.
Abolishing the income tax would be the ultimate stimulus, putting the money back into the hands of the people, which would be able to go towards buying goods and services, which would funnel money back into businesses, creating jobs and profits, which will bring the economy in good standing again.
Why is this a bad idea and why are so many people against it?

I wouldnt need to borrow money from a bank, that we give money to if I could save $2000 a month in income tax.

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108 Answers

ru2bz46's avatar

Long-term government spending is so bloated, they need any money they can get their mitts on. Clean up the government and its social programs, and it could work.

ragingloli's avatar

How else are the republicans going to pay for all their wars of aggressions violating iternational law against sovereign countries?

cwilbur's avatar

It would be a bad idea because of all the things that would need to be cut to pay for it.

Look at how much money the personal income tax brings in. Look at the annual budget, and cut it by the amount of money that would be lost when the personal income tax is taken away. Make sure the cuts are something that have support across the board.

If you can’t or won’t do that, then all this talk about eliminating income tax is just so much empty blather.

AstroChuck's avatar

I wouldn’t mind paying taxes if I knew they were going to a friendly country.

LKidKyle1985's avatar

dude eliminating the federal income tax is a terrible idea. yeah we pay a lot of different taxes like sales etc, but a lot of it does not go to the federal government. I don’t mind replacing the federal income tax with a different type of tax. But either way the federal goverment provides a lot of services, like the postal service, FBI, an awesome military, a federal court system, and the list goes on and on. And a side note, @AstroChuck the united states actually donates the smallest percentage in foreign aid compared to what we make. It just so happens that our small percentage is a good amount of money compared to what other countries can afford.

ubersiren's avatar

It’s not. We survived without it before (for 137 years after we we claimed our independence), and it can be done again. That is, if we as a nation would be willing to give up social programs, bureaucracy, and subsidies… you know, everything that’s wrong with the system. My guess is that nobody wants to give it up, though. We enjoy having a sugar daddy of a government. As long as we put out, we are taken care of.

ragingloli's avatar

@ubersiren. yes, fighting poverty really is evil, huh.

AstroChuck's avatar

@LKidKyle1985- The country I was referring to was the US.

lukiarobecheck's avatar

It sounds like you are talking about the Fair Tax Act. Check link. I would actually be for the Fair Tax Act. I know a tad bit about the Fair Tax Act. But from what I have heard, it seems like a legit idea.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FairTax.

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

@ragingloll

How about the drone attacks on Pakistan under the Obama administration?

Fighting poverty? How about the fact that we funded and supported at one time or another: Iraq, Iran, Osama Bin Laden, Communist China, Georgia(last years attack on South Ossetia),etc? Our money barely goes to funding poverty. If that was the case, wouldnt it be better to shoot some food over to somalia than shoot some pirates?

kevbo's avatar

Once again simply returning to the proper enforcement of the existing law would solve 90% of the problem. According to the book Cracking the Code, the Federal income tax is applicable only to Federal employees and companies that do business with the Federal government.

Qingu's avatar

It’s pointless to call for abolishing the income tax unless you also show exactly what you’re going to cut from federal spending to make up for the shortfall.

The problem is, a lot of the stuff you want to cut, other people don’t.

It also doesn’t make sense to pretend like we could instantly go back to the taxation system of the 1800’s. Our country has adapted over a hundred years to the current tax system—and many people are now dependent on that system functioning. Think of it like an ecosystem. If you upend our current ecosystem and replace it with a fair tax, you are destroying all of those niches—and there will probably be chaos as the new niches start to fill.

I’m in favor of reforming the system, but it’s naive to want to “eliminate” it.

wundayatta's avatar

Hmmm. No Social Security. No Medicare. No national defense. No interstate roads. No national or international detective force. Sounds like a great idea to me. Also a great opportunity to move to New Zealand.

lefteh's avatar

^ What daloon said. I’m getting tired of this argument. Like I said in one of the other threads, if you don’t want an income tax and the benefits that come along with it, move to North Korea.

ubersiren's avatar

We had a lot of that stuff before income taxes were implemented. All that can be obtained privately, too. Why should someone who didn’t agree with income tax move to N. Korea?

Qingu's avatar

@ubersiren, we didn’t have social security, interstate roads, medicare—not to mention satellites or the internet—before the income tax.

It’s possible that private companies and states could create such things, but unlikely. They are very long-term projects with somewhat obscure payoffs that few companies would actually want to invest in (let alone have the capital with which to invest).

ubersiren's avatar

We have the internet because of income tax? Hahaha…

ragingloli's avatar

@ubersiren yes. the internet is the result of development effort within the military and the sciences at cern, which was almost entirely funded by the state. without taxes, no funds, no development.

ubersiren's avatar

Oh my god, I need to escape this thread pronto.

lefteh's avatar

I do too..we agree on that! :)

Qingu's avatar

@ubersiren, what ragingloli said. See Arpanet.

Why exactly do you dispute this?

ru2bz46's avatar

I think the federal government should just stick to national issues, like infrastructure and national defense. Let the local governments (state, county city) handle social issues. We’ll pay higher local taxes, but the smaller bureaucracies should be able to move the money around more efficiently, so it should cost less.

ubersiren's avatar

I don’t dispute that the military had anything to do with it, I just disagree that we would never have things without the government. Have a little faith in your fellow man.

Qingu's avatar

@ru2bz46, that runs into problems with interstate commerce. You need some standards, or everyone in red states are just going to drive to the emergency rooms of blue states to get up on that state-universal health care.

@ubersiren, I have faith in my fellow man. I just dispute that capitalism is the only system of organization that produces useful results. People can also make useful things through government, and many of these things are later used in capitalism, as infrastructure. Government works on a larger scale and on a longer term, with less of a profit motive, than capitalism, so it tends to be better at producing infraustructure like highways and utilities.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

Revenue has to come from somewhere. The US has it pretty good with taxes. Sweden however pay a much higher percentage for example.

I think US income tax regulations are needlessly complex however and needs refinement.

ubersiren's avatar

The Renaissance… A BOOMING time for invention, creativity, new technologies, innovation, and discovery. How much of that was funded by socialists? I don’t think capitalism is the only way to achieve results. I don’t think there is any ONE way to accomplish anything. On a basic level, I think currency itself is a silly notion. I’m not particularly capitalist… I’m not sure what I am. I just think the tax system doesn’t make sense. The government is essentially acting as a third party distributor for my money. Why can’t I pay for my services directly? I don’t care if YOU want the government to handle your shit… but why am I not at least given that option? Who would I be hurting other than myself?

ru2bz46's avatar

@Qingu I seriously doubt the red state people will give up their quality health care to get the socialized blue medical services.

Qingu's avatar

@ubersiren, again, you’re just incredibly wrong. Most of the research during the Rennaissance was funded by royalty. See Royal Society.

I think it’s just as foolish to idealize the free market as it is to idealize the government. The free market does not and has never existed in a vacuum. It has always existed side-by-side with a government, without which commerce would not even be possible. You need a government to enforce laws against theft, to enforce torts, to build and maintain trade routes, and to fight off invaders.

And it’s also worth noting that both the government and the free market suffer from the exact same problems. Both systems are susceptible to corruption and manipulation. Both systems function at their best when they are transparent, innovative, responsive, and when people have the freedom to choose—politicians to represent them, or products and services.

You want a free market without government? Move to Somalia.

Qingu's avatar

@ru2bz46, why on earth do you think socialized health care is less quality than what we have in America? (Especially because something like a sixth of Americans have zero health care?)

Did you hear on the radio that people in Canada have to wait in long lines or something?

DREW_R's avatar

It wouldn’t be bad. It would force the government to draw in it’s greedy tenticals and get lots smaller and managable.

ubersiren's avatar

The Royal Society was founded in 1660. The Renaissance began in the 14th century. But thanks for bringing up an association of which I was not previously aware.

ubersiren's avatar

Fuck, I love my ability to read!

ubersiren's avatar

YES, @DREW_R . We should make some babies together. Liberated, non-socialist, self-accountable babies.

DREW_R's avatar

@ragingloli

We will get more taxes from the Democrats than the GOP. Just will be in the form of taxes on CO2, gas, tabbaco, alcohol and the such. Telling us we need to wear helmets and seat belts and that we need the governments insurance.

ubersiren's avatar

@DREW_R : Hell yes… laws that create victimless crimes, creating dependency on the government… you understand! It’s all bullshit! That’s all I’m saying (only I sound like a crazy person when I explain things)!

DREW_R's avatar

@ubersiren LOL I thought I was the crazy one. All my babies are liberated, non-socialist, self accountable babies. But I am willing to make more. >:)

Qingu's avatar

@ubersiren, I brought up the Royal Society as an example, as it’s the source of the most amazing scientific discoveries and inventions post-Rennaissance. I was a little confused as to why you brought up the Renaissance itself, which was largely an artistic and philosophical movement. Of course, most of those artists and philosophers were also bankrolled by nobles.

Qingu's avatar

@ubersiren, laws against pollution create victimless crimes?

The people who are affected by pollution don’t count as victims?

DREW_R's avatar

@Qingu You probably are in favor of letting the kid from Somalia, a pirate, possibly under 18 yrs old, in NY for arraignment, go and just forgive and forget. It was a victimless crime. Oh, I forgot, we killed the kids shipmates so he is now the victim. HUMPH !

Qingu's avatar

Take it to the other thread, dude.

You also seem to be arguing against the wrong person. ubersiren was the one talking about how we shouldn’t regulate “victimless” crimes.

ubersiren's avatar

Pollution totally creates victims. I never said anything of the sort. I’m talking about the dumb ass helmet laws and anti-marijuana BS. Let people smoke themselves retarded and ride their bikes off a cliff for all I care.

And don’t try to cover your ass, you directly said that the Renaissance was funded by the Royal Society. Go up and read it yourself.

Stop making shit up!

wundayatta's avatar

This is highly amusing. It seems to me that the basic facts on the ground are in dispute here, and that no one will convince anyone else until there is agreement on what the world looks like.

I’m going back to my tiddlywinks game!

Qingu's avatar

I’m with you on marijuana, ambivalent about helmet laws.

I also did not say the Renaissance was funded by the Royal Society. I said most of the research during the Renaissance was funded by royalty. Which is absolutely true. (The Royal Society is not “royalty,” it’s the earliest scientific organization.) Of course, you mentioned inventions, so I assumed you actually meant the stuff that happened after the Renaissance, which was, like I said, mainly an artistic and philosophic movement.

I’m not really sure what point you’re trying to make with these attempts at nitpicking. Your original point—that the Renaissance and later inventions happened independent of government—is simply incorrect.

drClaw's avatar

How do I give @daloon 10 GAs?

dalepetrie's avatar

First off, let’s lay the groundwork and get a brief history of taxation in the US and the reasons therefore, because these little pat statements just serve to show the one side of the picture you want to paint in order to support your Libertarian rants.

When the colonies were first established, there WAS no federal government, each state was an entity in and of itself, and each colony was a) very small and thus needed very little money, and b) was able to obtain what it needed by collecting excise taxes on exports. Remember, the original colonists came and basically discovered this bountiful land, brimming with untapped natural resources to exploit, so it was very easy to meet the needs of these various colonies, which were self sufficient (and whose only “enemies” were the original inhabitants of the land, making it very feasible to pay for their militias by selling the fruits of their victory over the natives). Up until 1765, this worked out just fine for everyone, the mother country was making money off the new land and it’s financial needs were met, but then they went to war with France, and suddenly, they needed more money. So, they started a stamp tax and a tea tax on the colonies. This did not sit well with the colonists because they were being taxed, but they were not receiving any services for their taxes, aka taxation without representation, leading to the tea party. This led to the Revolutionary war, which when it was over in 1781, left the colonies as a collective to form a new collective government, which at first had very, very few responsibilities, and needed very little tax revenue. It relied on voluntary donations from the colonies to meet its needs. Of course in 1789 when the first Continental Congress was formed, and the Constitution was adopted, the founding fathers acknowledged that NO government could survive by relying solely on other governments for its revenue. At that time, Congress was granted the power to, ”…lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and excises, pay the Debts and provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the United States.”

In the earliest days of Federal taxation, taxes were generally levied on things like liquor, tobacco, property sales, vehicles (horse drawn carriages), and legal documents…essentially consumption taxes, most of which were based on social concepts (i.e., they wanted to discourage excessive drinking among those who could not afford it, things of that nature). But property owners of course wanted to shift the burden almost entirely to consumption, and the government and the people it represented, wary of taxation in general due to the taxes which led to the Revolutionary War, wanted to ensure that taxes were not used as a tool solely to re-distribute wealth. Essentially, it boiled down to fairness…people were willing to pay taxes if they got something for their tax dollars…i.e., as long as the government actually did provide for common defense and general welfare, it was all good. So, in those days,if people thought a tax was unfair, they would violently protest against it (see the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794).

Now, in the late 1790s, Congress levied the first “direct” taxes, meaning taxes on the value of owned property to pay for the war with France, and like I said, these taxes were not all that popular among property/slave owners, so in 1802, those taxes were repealed and the government was still small enough (and conflict free enough) to live without any revenues except excise taxes…until the war of 1812. That’s when Treasury Notes were first sold, and we started to see duties on customs as well as an increase in excise taxes. By 1817 however, we were war free again, and we went back to the way things were from 1802 to 1812. But of course, the Civil War arose 44 years later, and THAT is when income was first taxed directly. So the notion that we didn’t have an income tax until the 1930s is no more than a lie told to forward a Libertarian agenda. The war also led to a whole slew of new consumption taxes on pretty much everything people bought, and new licensing requirements for almost every profession so that licensing fees could be had. 1862 saw the income tax moved to a tiered system with a progressive tax structure, and collection by the employer, just like we have today, as well as the institution of the standard deduction. Now, by 1868, most of the war debts were paid, and many of these taxes were repealed, and the income tax WAS repealed in 1872. By this time, almost all of the government’s needs were being met by taxes on alcohol and tobacco. So until 1913, the US economy relied heavily on tariffs that were way too high, and excise taxes which relied way too heavily on the poorest members of society. So, in 1913, given that trying to run a government without taxes based on income was simply not feasible (consumption taxes just weren’t meeting the revenue requirements, for even a government MUCH smaller than ANYONE would advocate for today), so Congress enacted an income tax which has been with us ever since. WWI saw huge expansions in individual income tax liability to pay for the war, instating a 77% top tax tier in 1918, which was brought down to 25% in the 20s when the economy boomed, but the Depression hit, and once again in 1932 taxes on income started to go up again. By 1936 the top tier was paying 79%.

There was no big boom though before the next big war, WWII, where the top tax rate, on incomes over $1M was 94%! The tax rate stayed pretty high, it was 87% in the 50s even with the economic boom due in part to the Korean War, and until the 80s it went down bits and pieces until it hit 75%. Then Reagan came on board, bringing it down to 50%, and then to 28%! He did this by shifting the burden from those who made the most money to those who made the least money. Clinton brought that top tier up to 39.6%, Bush II down to 36%, Obama wanted to get it up to 38%...now people are so convinced he’s a socialist that we have people screaming to throw out Federal taxation.

So, the problem with doing that, as I see it is this. The government needs money to function. Any money it borrows it has to pay back so it must earn or take that money. Since the same Libertarian ideal of low taxes also doesn’t believe in nationalization of industry, the government can’t really “make” money, and must take it. And they must take it where they can get it, in other words, through taxes. But the government’s responsibility, as laid out by the founding fathers is to ensure the defense and WELFARE of the United States’ citizens. If we’re not ensuring our people have adequate education, health care, safety, security (both from crime and unexpected economic hardship), infrastructure, etc., our government is really not living up to its promise. And even given the tax structure we have now, it’s NOT living up to these promises. So, to cut services when so many needs are still going unmet is antithetical to the purpose of HAVING a government, and it disproportionately affects our must vulnerable citizens. But we can wash away our guilt about this by convincing ourselves that everyone who needs any sort of public assistance from the government is a lazy slob who won’t take “personal responsibility” all the while we visit our libraries, send our kids to schools, drive on roads, and thank God for our unemployment checks when our employers lay us off, without giving that aspect of government “welfare” a second thought.

The problem is, we are now in a world where the needs of our nation, as a world superpower and a member of the global economy, are quite pricey…far more than they’ve ever been before. And for 30 years now we have pushed forth to become a bigger and bigger part of the “world” while continually cutting funding for our own needs at home, expecting people to meet the rising costs themselves of things they have looked to the government for historically, and to meet new needs that didn’t exist for the people who came before us. So, we have it flipped on its head, the US government has to give funding to the states, not the other way around, but when they don’t, the states collect it themselves, or they cut funding to local and county governments, who CAN’T tax income. And so as the tax revenues from income get smaller, they get replaced by taxes on CONSUMPTION. Something we realized nearly 100 years ago was detrimental to the welfare of our nation. Our tax structure is simply put too complicated. It has been used for too many years to incentivise some things and disincentivise others, and so we have thousands of new codes added every year. And this is all done to keep the tax code less and less transparent, because if the people think they are getting value for the taxes they pay, they will gladly pay them, so if people are unclear what they are paying for, they have no way of knowing if they’re being overcharged.

But now we’ve reached a time in history when both citizens and lawmakers are forgetting what we’ve learned from history. We are not providing enough value for the taxes we collect. And we are forgetting that if we go back to a consumption based tax system, it’s not going to cut it, and the only people who would survive it are people who are already financially set, and THEY are the ones pulling the strings, selling this line to people, because the welfare of the United States doesn’t mean anything to them, only the ability to make unlimited sums of money unfettered. What we REALLY need to do is to make taxes fair, and unless we make it illegal for anyone OTHER than the US government to collect taxes, and collect all taxes at the Federal level based on income at the same rate for every person, there is only one way to do this…that is a progressive tax structure, like we have. The reason the more prosperous SHOULD have to pay a higher rate than the less prosperous is twofold. One, at lower levels where people are not yet meeting their subsistence needs, those dollars should not be taxed…survival dollars should be free an clear, because welfare of our citizens means we should be able to survive on what we make if we’re willing to work. But those who make the least are impacted the most by consumption taxes, because it’s not as if you person A makes 1000 times as much as person B, then person A buys 1000 times as much food and clothing. But when you get right down to it, a low wage earner is paying a higher percentage of his income in taxes, ALL taxes than is the person making the most money. In fact even with our current progressive rate, with all the incentives and taxes on consumption, the more you make, the lower your tax burden is as a percentage of your income. That’s why we need higher tiers, to make the tax system more fair. What is needed is a new look at the system. Figure out what the government needs to take in, and figure out a way to collect it that balances out the effects of consumption taxes and results in a fairly even rate on “excess” income fore everyone, regardless of what they make, while looking out for the defense and welfare of our nation and all it’s citizens. You can’t do that if you repeal income taxes, so THAT’s why it’s a bad idea.

YARNLADY's avatar

@drClaw You can give people more points by visiting their other questions and answers until you reach the mandated limit.

ubersiren's avatar

@daloon : I’m pretty sure that’s what all debates are about.

@dalepetrie: Yeah, I’d take smaller governments over bigger ones any day. So, taking away income tax would force us into smaller colonies again? Better than nothing… seems to me that smaller entities would have better control. Hmmm, maybe I’m a confederate… or confederationist…confederationalist… whatever that would be.

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

@dalepetrie

Thank you for that very insightful answer.
I think you make a great point about making the system more fair. That is my biggest point for just wanting to abolish it all together. I might be happier if it was more fair.

I am pretty young, make pretty good money, and Im pissed off that because I dont own a house, have a kid, or married, I have to pay income taxes out that ass. Im talking $500 a week out the ass.

Qingu's avatar

@chris6137, I think the problem is that people don’t factor taxes into their mental picture of expenses.

It’s like how at restaurants, a dish may cost $10 on the menu, but you know with tax and tip it’s actually going to be $13.

In Europe, I understand that restaurants actually have to put down the price that you’ll pay at the end, taxes and tip included. I’d support something similar for job offers—they don’t just say what salary you’ll be making, they tell you your after-tax salary.

Qingu's avatar

@dalepetrie, a most excellent answer.

dalepetrie's avatar

@ubersiren – well, I think we’ve opened a Pandora’s box. Unless you want to be 50 neutral colonies with no Federal government at all, each paying for it’s own militia, you couldn’t do it. You would then with this system have to have each state charge excise taxes to each other and to foreign lands. But even now, we’ve become a service economy and importers…we really no longer have the ability to become the kind of agrarian society we once were. Basically, we’re at a point where the economies of each one of our 50 states is bigger than the entire US economy was before we started to collect income taxes. You’d pretty much have to go to a county by county system and abolish state governments as well. And then you’d essentially be in the place teh Native Americans were in colonial days, because no county is going to be able to fight off a foreign invader. With growth of our society and economy comes growth of our responsibility, we need to look for new ideas for the future, not reach back to the failed ideas of the past.

critter1982's avatar

@Qingu: Government works on a larger scale and on a longer term, with less of a profit motive, than capitalism, so it tends to be better at producing infraustructure like highways and utilities.

Do you really believe this? Our government is $11 trillion in debt. They receive about $2 trillion a year and they still can’t figure out how to balance a budget. Non profit work leads to mediocrity (unless of course you have a bunch of individuals that truly care about what they do, ie. not the government). Profitability leads to innovation, and in general better ways of doing things, and at worst case it leads to not being in debt.

lataylor's avatar

@critter1982 – I could not agree more. Great answer.

wundayatta's avatar

@ubersiren: Nope. Facts are facts. They are not debatable. Analysis is debatable. Policy is debatable. If we are debating facts, then we’re being lazy and not doing our research, or, worse, we are deliberately ignoring facts that are inconvenient for our analytical and policy arguments.

Qingu's avatar

@critter1982, why are we $11 trillion in debt?

There are two reasons to go into debt. One is warfare. Recall that we went into a huge debt during WW2. Now, I certainly agree that debt over Iraq is a waste of time, because Iraq is a waste of time. But that’s part of the reason.

The other reason to go into debt is investment. Just like in the private sector, governments take out loans to invest. This isn’t exactly complicated, and the payoff is obvious. If we invest in infrastructure that supports economic activity, then the debt is worth it. The only difference is that it takes longer to see if it’s worth it. But certainly, the highway system, the development of the space program and satellites, and the development of ARPANET were worth it. Our advanced economy today simply could not exist without these things.

As for paying off debts—look at what happened during the Clinton years. There was a huge amount of economic productivity, and we paid off our debt and got a huge surplus with modest taxes. Private companies take out loans to invest in their internal workings and boost their productivity in the long run. Why are you opposed to governments doing the same thing?

Qingu's avatar

Also, profitibility does not always lead to innovation. Plenty of innovations were created with no intent to make a profit. And a profit motive just as often leads to shortsightedness and corruption.

Again, it’s striking how much you idealize the free market. It’s almost like a cult that you worship.

lataylor's avatar

@Qingu – Many important medical discoveries have come from private interprise. It is quiet likely that more has come from private industry than from NIHa nd NSF-funded research.

As for investing in infrastructure, I wholeheartedly agree and most Americans agree as well. As for investing in social programs and redistribution, there is much less evidenceof benefits and many would consider takingf rom one and giving to another immoral. Have you ever visited the Census website and looked at teh striking direct relationship between number of hours worked and income. It is not difficult to make a living in this country and it is a simple matter of fact that in general more work leads to more income. The data is impressive if you take a look.

wundayatta's avatar

@lataylor ” It is quiet likely that more has come from private industry than from NIHa nd NSF-funded research.”

I’d love to see some data about this. As far as I know, half or a little more of research is funded by the government. The results of most of that research need to be available to the public, so anyone can use it. Research conducted in the private sector remains private. I’ll betcha anything that even if more discoveries have come from the private sector, that more benefit has come from the public sector.

Qingu's avatar

@lataylor, many important medical discoveries have come from publically funded enterprise. I’m not arguing either/or. I’m saying we need both.

I’m curious as to what specific Census data supports your assertion. I am familiar with the idea of “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps,” which is largely a myth in America. More socialized countries actually have greater social mobility.

Recent studies suggest that there is less economic mobility in the U.S. than researchers originally believed. And, in sharp contrast to the view of America as the land of opportunity, we may be a less mobile society than many other nations.

lataylor's avatar

@daloon – It would not be possible to prove or disprove your assertion about the yield of benefit from public versus private funded research as the definition of benefit would differ from American to American. But, as a physician who reads science frequently and treats patients daily I would not be too quick to judge. There are VERY few medications that have been discovered or created in publicly funded labs. And it may not be an accident that 12 of the 20 largest pharmaceutical companies are located in the US (including the two largest). Hepatitis C virus, the number one cause of cirrhosis, liver cancer and need for liver transplant was discovered by a biotech company in San Francisco. Almost every major advance in the treatment and understanding of etiology of Hep C Virus has occured in private industry. And Schering plough (maker of the interferon used to treat HCV) donates millions of dollars to my university to treat unfunded patients. We are therefore able to treat anyone who wants treatment. Even incarcerated patients, homeless patients, unemployed, poor, etc.

lataylor's avatar

@Qingu – I am moonlighting right now and do not have time to access the data, but if you go to the US Census Bureau website you can find the dtaa tables for relationship to income and number of hours worked. It is striking. I saved the data in my email files and if I get time later I will find it for you. This is the land of opportunity and if you want to make money you can and if you want a leisure lifestyle of less effort you can find that too. It is a great country with many great choices.

As for “more socialized countries have greater social mobility” are you referring to China, Cuba, Venezuela, USSR, North Korea, Argentina, Nicaragua or Sweden, Norway, France, Germany? Many people may argue that the data you will find above argues against the need to redistribute.

Why take from one and give to another if those with more are working harder for what they have? Case in point: My colleagues at my day job are at home right now, while I work a second job, so is it fair to tax me at a higher rate than my colleagues when it is my decision to work an extra 20 hours per week at my second job?

Qingu's avatar

@lataylor, I cannot find the data you’re talking about. I’d like to look at it. I actually agree with you in sentiment—I think the number of hours you work should be a large factor in how much money you get.

That said, I think it’s absolutely fair to tax you more if you make more money. For two big reasons. One: law of diminishing returns. Money is a representation of value. Put simply, your money is worth less to you if you have more of it. A family on the poverty line values their money much more than you do, because their survival depends on maintaining it. It’s disingenuous to pretend that the amount of money you make is some objective measure entirely separate from what that money means to you.

Secondly, it’s also disingenuous to pretend that you live, work, and make money in a vacuum. In reality, you depend on the government for all of these things. Your job, whatever it is, most likely uses electricity, the internet, and probably the highway system to transport its goods. It requires law enforcement to protect it against theft. It also probably requires consumers above the poverty line to purchase its products. All of these things cost money, and wealthy people depend on them to maintain their wealth more than poor people do.

So yes, it is your choice to work more and make more money. Is the fact that the extra money you make gets taxed at 38% instead of 28% really that much of a disincentive for you? That extra 10% pays for the things that make your ability to generate and keep that wealth possible. Sounds fair to me.

Also, it’s absurd to pretend that a kid born into poverty with no good education has the same opportunities that someone like me does. Unless you are talking about the opportunity to work two shifts at McDonalds—which, by the way, probably doesn’t exist in today’s economic climate anyway.

I believe the study compared us to other developed, Western countries—so obviously not China, Cuba, or North Korea. Economic mobility is strongly correlated to education. So, countries that fund and encourage education will have greater social mobility. Again, the idea of pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps is a compelling myth in America, but it’s still a myth. There is no evidence to support your assertion that libertarianism leads to economic mobility. It’s just one of those things conservatives like to repeat over and over again until they believe it’s true, like “we don’t torture.”

lataylor's avatar

@Qingu – Here is the first link which shows the declining rate of poverty in a steady fashion over the last 40 years, to a current level lower than most European countries (including France). See page 12:

http://www.census.gov/prod/2008pubs/p60-235.pdf

It also shows abolishes the myth that the elderly are poor. As can be seen on page 14, they are the least poor group (so why do we buy medications for ALL elderly?).

As for the relationship between hours worked and income, I could not find that right now, but I will work on that when I get time. Funny that it is harder to find on their website.

Qingu's avatar

I don’t see your assertion supported on page 12.

Do you have some statistics? I looked and found this (and the U.S. has 11.9% poverty compared to France’s 6.2%). Of course, I’m curious as to how you’d even expect to compare poverty rates, since those rates vary by country.

As for the rest of your post, I’m not sure why you brought up the elderly. (though a poverty rate among eldery of ~10% doesn’t really seem “low” to me…)

lataylor's avatar

Page 12 shows the declining rate of poverty over the years, steadily declining since the 1960’s.

I do not mean to diminish the poverty rate of elderly (ideally poverty would not exist), but as a group they are the least poor by age, and teh notion that younger, less affluent Americans should pay for free medications for the elderly is less than straightforward.

Our poverty rate is nothing to be ashamed of, but as you pointed out, it is higher than France’s from 2004. That may be different now that France has higher unemployment than us, which may be a sign of the success of their policies (throw CA and OR in that lineup as they are among the leaders of our highest unemployment states).

I will look for that data, really, I will.

lataylor's avatar

@Qingu – Alas, I just finished admitting another patient and had a minute, so I found that data:

http://pubdb3.census.gov/macro/032006/hhinc/new05_000.htm

You can see that the wealthier by each quintile studied worked more hours, more often had more than one income per household and more often worked over 50 hours per week.

I will agree to disagree (respectfull, of course) with you that high income earners (AKA hard workers, as seen by my attached data) should not only pay more in absolute dollars, but also a higher percentage. But, I do agree that we are not all given exactly the same opportunities. Nevertheless, I believe we are given strikingly similar opportunities, to the best that goevrnance can accomplish.

Taxation is decidedly progressive here, however and I do not think it healthy or moral for half of Americans to pay no federal income tax and 10% to pay 70% of federal income tax. Furthermore, I believe we will see declining initiative and innovation, and we will join the ranks of the Western Europena mediocrity while East Asia sees a technilogical boom. Hopefully I am wrong.

ubersiren's avatar

@dalepetrie : That’s exactly what I want.

Qingu's avatar

@lataylor, you said we are given “strikingly similar” opportunities. Frankly, I think this is absurd. Someone born into a broken home in a neighborhood with terrible public schools does not have similar opportunities as a wealthy suburbanite kid with a stable family life and great public schools. They are not even in the same ballpark. This is why there continues to be an income and education gap between poor minorities and wealthy Americans. Again, “equal opportunity, pull yourself up by your bootstraps” is a myth that conservatives like to repeat over and over again because it makes them feel better about themselves. The reality is that countries with higher public investments in education and social safety nets have more economic mobility.

As for “mediocrity” in Western Europe, I’m not really sure what you’re talking about. Mediocrity in terms of what, exactly? Life expectancy (they’re higher than us)? Economic mobility (higher)? Scientific advancement (the LHC was built in Europe and they’re rapidly outcompeting us in research)?

Qingu's avatar

Also, on the poverty rate: I don’t really see how the data is constructive to begin with. It’s a movable goalpost. Each nation sets its own poverty rate, and the rates change.

The idea of measuring wealth itself seems rather pointless to me as well. Wealth only has value if it gets you stuff you want. Well, a lot of people want health care and economic security, so in that respect Europe and Canada is a lot better off than we are to start. Another problem with “wealth” is that I would rather be a poor person with the Internet and air-conditioning than the richest Roman emperor. Technology not only drives wealth, it creates new demand, which eventually becomes base expectations. Wealth is meaningless without some technological and sociological context.

YARNLADY's avatar

@DREW_R @ubersiren There are plenty of places where you could have that, why do you stay were you hate it so much? You could just find yourself another country to be part of, it’s that easy, instead of yammering on about how much you don’t like this one.

Strauss's avatar

@YARNLADY sounds like you’re saying love it or leave it?

lataylor's avatar

Data does not lie. The data shows that more work is directly related to more income.

ragingloli's avatar

@DREW_R @ubersiren if you really want that then i would advise you to look back at history to see what was the defining feature of such states.
Look at Europe’s Middle ages, Japan’s Sengoku Jidai, America’s pre-union years, and today’s Africa.
In the case of the Europe , Japan and Africa, what you will see is poverty, social underdevelopment and most importantly, constant warfare among the states, and America has its civil war.
If that is what you want, and that is inevitable in a multistate situation without any unifying agent, then i really hope you never get the power to create such a situation.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Yetanotheruser What I am saying is that for people who hate the very foundations that make this country great, and offer little or nothing helpful in exchange, there are other places that better fit their needs. There is already a better fit, elsewhere. It’s more like “if what you want is more than you’ll ever get, look somewhere else”.

The slogan “love it or leave it” only fits when you are a mob trying to prevent people from making legal, resonable changes by following the procedures that are in place. These two do not apprear to be interested in working for positive change, but only in railing against paying their fair share.

DREW_R's avatar

@YARNLADY To annoy pinko commie liberals. ;)

DREW_R's avatar

@ragingloli I am not saying getting rid of the central hub. I am saying that the majority of the power needs to be taken out of the feds hands and put back into the states hands thus making it easier to get at by We the People. Of course it wouldn’t make it any easier due to the fact of the noisy liberal minority over shouting the moderate and conservative majority would it? Noisy lil shits. ;)

YARNLADY's avatar

@DREW_R Do I understand you correctly that you are trying to annoy people who would legalize the use of marijuana, among other progressive, liberal ideas?

ragingloli's avatar

@DREW_R it is the “noisy liberal minority” that actually ended slavery, segregation and brought equal rights for women, when the “moderate conservative” majority still supported slavery, segregation and the opression of women.

DREW_R's avatar

@YARNLADY Marijuana is a viable medicine and people will and can benifit from it no harm to any. Most of the other crap is just that, liberal crap.

Leave my Bill of Rights alone. ;)

DREW_R's avatar

@ragingloli If I remember right that was the Republicans, or was Abe just the odd man out?

ragingloli's avatar

conservative =/= republican.
the former is a political orientation, the latter is a party, and a party’s policies change over time.
a conservative is someone who wants to preserve/go back to the status quo, e.g. keeping slavery, keeping segragation, keeping women from having equal rights.

YARNLADY's avatar

@DREW_R So only to annoy ‘some’ liberals, but only the ones that agree with you.

DREW_R's avatar

@ragingloli Never go back to the points in your eg… No. I am actually more of a moderate. Kind of slide both ways on different subject, eg. gay marrage-go for it, pot-harmless, Seatbelts/helmets required for adults-bullshit,... I personally have to say though our society took a deffinate nose dive when mothers had to leave the home and start working outside the home, IMHO.

DREW_R's avatar

@YARNLADY I hope not to annoy the ones that agree with me. ;)

YARNLADY's avatar

@DREW_R or is that wishy-washy? typo add don’t in front of “agree”

wundayatta's avatar

Yesterday, I wrote a long, well-researched answer to refute @lataylor‘s points. Unfortunately, when I pressed answer, nothing happened, and I pressed it again, and the fluther login screen came up. Needless to say, the answer had disappeared. Well, we all know how disheartening that can be. I was going to just let it go, hoping others would catch on to what he was doing, but now I see that his gross misinterpretations of the data are going on uncontested, so I’ll try again. If the internet eats this one, I’ll have to shoot myself, but of course, none of you will know why, if that happens. And if it does go through, I won’t have to shoot myself.

Well, to summarize, @lataylor‘s interpretations of the data he cites are far off. Not only does he misinterpret it, but he seems to be reading it wrong. We’ll see what he says when I show him where I think he’s gone wrong. Further, he is also wrong about the relationship between government system and productivity. As we shall see, while the US economy is very productive (second in the world), a socialist nation is beating out the US in terms of productivity. Finally, I will show how the trends do not bode well for the American system. Our productivity is growing more slowly than that of many countries, including many socialist countries. It is something to worry about, and something that suggests that if we want to improve ourselves, we might do well to look towards socialistic practices.

First, @lataylor claims that the poverty rate has been declining steadily for the last forty years. Unfortunately, the graph he cites shows that poverty rates declined precipitously between 1959 and 1973, and have remained essentially flat ever since. There has been no progrees in fighting poverty for the last 35 years!

Second, he claims that the elderly are the least poor group. This is a misunderstanding of what the poverty rate is. The elderly may have fewer people in poverty (just slightly lower than the rate for folks ages 18 to 64, and almost half the poverty rate for children), but this does not mean they are the least poor. These tables do not show the median income for the different age groups, but these tables from the census show that the elderly were and are far below the working age population in terms of median income. In fact, they are the lowest median incomes, proving that the elderly are, in fact, the poorest of Americans.
Third, he claims that more hours worked leads to more income. Not only is he wrong on that claim (as I will show below), but he isn’t even reading the table correctly. Nowhere in that table are “hours” mentioned. What is mentioned is the number of weeks worked per year. Of course, the more weeks you work, the higher your income. This has nothing to do with labor market conditions (what kind of work is available), nor with productivity, which is the real measure of how well people are doing, and by extension, how well the nation is doing.

Arguably the best measure of productivity is Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per hours worked. It shows how much each hour of work by the workers in a country contributes to the overall GDP. On this measure, the US is doing quite well, but it is not the best, not by a long shot. As this table (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP)_per_capita_per_hour) shows, a socialist nation, Norway, beats us by nearly two dollars per hour per worker! The next two nations at the top, Luxembourg and France, are separated from us by significantly less than a dollar per hour. In fact, ten out of the top fifteen most productive nations could be considered far more socialistic than the US!

Of course, the socialist nations know what to do with their productivity. They work less time per year, and make more work for others, thus, no doubt, reducing poverty rates. The people of the United States work, on average, 1777 hours per year, ranking seventh among all the nations. The nations that work more? Korea, Poland, Mexico, the Czech Republic, Japan and Greece, nations pretty low on the productivity scale. The most productive of that group, Japan, appears at nineteenth in productivity.

Finally, there is real cause for worry for the capitalist system as designed in the United States. Our productivity is growing more slowly than Korea, Japan, and many others. Of the OECD nations, we are barely above average in productivity growth (again, as measured by GDP per worker hour). Our productivity has grown at a slower rate than Norway’s (ahead of us in productivity) in nine out of the fifteen years from 1990 to 2005. The other nations close to us or better than us in productivity growth, as can be seen here are quite a few socialistic nations.

Ok, perhaps I’ve gone overboard here, but I hate it when people don’t look at the data, and when they do look at the data, they don’t understand it, or, sometimes, deliberately misconstrue it. The Bushies liked to misconstrue data, and when even that didn’t work, they ignored it entirely. We now have an administration that is serious about understanding what is going on in this country. Still, it is important to have fact checkers looking over things, to make sure people have it right. I thank @lataylor for forcing me to check his facts. I wish I didn’t have to, but there it is. The bottom line, the US could do a lot worse than to emulate the policies of our more socialistic compatriots in the OECD. In fact, we’ve been doing worse. If we change course, we have a good chance of doing better.

Qingu's avatar

Seeing as @lataylor is apparently one of the people who thinks torture and waterboarding is only as bad as his medical residency, I wouldn’t expect much from him in terms of intellectual honesty.

DREW_R's avatar

@daloon Of course you didn’t mention the jobs that could be had in the USA if all of the frigging free trade agreements were nixed. It would effectively bring the jobs back to America thus making our economy better, less poor. Of course that would make more porverty and less production in the socialist countries. Ah boo hoo.

Qingu's avatar

@DREW_R, have you read Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations?

DREW_R's avatar

@Qingu Nope, never heard of it.

Qingu's avatar

It’s basically the foundation of capitalism. He developed the idea of free markets and the “invisible hand” that guides them.

He was also in favor of free trade.

wundayatta's avatar

@DREW_R: I don’t suppose you have any evidence whatsoever to suggest that your assertion is even remotely true? Like I said, some people want to throw around rhetoric in the place of actual information. It’s usually because the data don’t support their opinions.

ragingloli's avatar

@DREW_R so what you are proposing is isolationism, am i getting this right?

the only way to bring jobs back to america from outside of the country is by making production outside america less profitable than in america itself.
this can only be done by throwing an incredible high tax on shipping from outside the country, or by drastically lowering wages in america.
the former would lead to less competition inside the country, because it essentially robs the customers of viable alternatives to american tat, resulting in a oligopoly in the best case and in a monopoly in the worst case, leading to a drop in product quality and selection and higher prices. and honestly, just look at the cars the big 3 produce. even today, they are all rubbish. at the same time, this would make american products uncompetitive outside the US.

The latter would lead to a lower living standard inside the US, because to make inland production viable, the wages would have to be as low, or lower, as wages, let’s say, in vietnam, in china, in thailand, etc.. and their wages are REALLY low.
so the result would be, in america, wages would be low. that means, people will not be able to buy as much as they could now. meaning that revenues and profits will plummet. they might even make an overall loss. to counter that, they would have to reduce costs even further. meaning lower quality of products due to cheaper and lower quality materials, less thorough production quality itself and so on.
meaning low quality american tat. even worse than today.

is this what you want? because this would be the result if your “proposal” came true.

(of yourse you could also offer state side subsidies tied to certain conditions (like a certain percentage of in country production) to companies, but that would be “evil socialism” in your book)

DREW_R's avatar

@ragingloli Not isolation dude. That would do us no good. I would charge huge taxes on the American companies that do their business overseas though. I am for fair trade not free trade. Everywhere else charges us tarriffs why should we not do the same? Just so we can get their products? I don’t think so. We did at one time do most of our products here at home. We sell our timber to Mexico, Canada and Japan. Now we buy our lumber from Canada, Japan and Mexico, as well as our cars, eg. Ford is built in Mexico and Canada, and many other products. Why send those jobs overseas when we need them here.
This I have 1st hand experience with NAFTA. The mill I worked at closed due to NAFTA. There was no way we could/can compete with Mexicos, Canada’s and Japans cheap labor.

kate1746's avatar

As of today the US is in debt $11,157,559,527,732.89. we need to pay federal taxes.

YARNLADY's avatar

Mostly because there isn’t a viable alternative in place, yet. Once there is, let’s go for it.

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

@YARNLADY
I would respectfully disagree.

List of Taxes We Pay

Just for fun, a list of all the taxes we pay here in the U.S.:

Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
Capital Gains Tax
CDL License Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Court Fines (indirect taxes)
Dog License Tax
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Permit Tax
Gasoline Tax (42 cents per gallon)
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Interest Expense (tax on the money)
Inventory Tax I
RS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)
IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Local Income Tax
Luxury Taxes
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Recreational Vehicle Tax
Road Toll Booth Taxes
Road Usage Taxes (truckers)
Sales Taxes
School Tax
Septic Permit Tax
Service Charge Taxes
Social Security Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Toll Bridge Taxes Toll
Tunnel Taxes
Trailer Registration
Tax Utility Taxes
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers’ Compensation Tax

YARNLADY's avatar

@chris6137 So you’re saying that there is an alternative. You do realize that list increase 100 fold, and so would the administrative services necessary, if the Federal Income Tax was abolished and a pay per use tax substituted, don’t you.

DREW_R's avatar

@YARNLADY

The only taxes authorized by the Constitution are Excize taxes and tarrifs. Those 2 are just to run the federal government and are not supposed to support the citizens, illegals, and all of the public bull shit the government of today is supporting such as DEA, a standing military, welfare, health care, education… and the list goes on…

ragingloli's avatar

@DREW_R
i wouldn’t call welfare, healthcare or education “bullshit”
i’d call them essentials

YARNLADY's avatar

@DREW_R Your assertion has been debunked in many places, as you well know, however, if you really believe that and are just spouting, stop paying your taxes

Noel_S_Leitmotiv's avatar

How are those that didnt earn any money supposed to get some?

critter1982's avatar

@Noel_S_Leitmotiv: I can only hope you are being facetious…........but just incase you aren’t, getting a job would be a start. :)

Noel_S_Leitmotiv's avatar

@critter1982: I was being facetious.

Darbio16's avatar

100% of the income tax goes to the debt we owe to the Federal Reserve. Roads are paid by the highway and gas tax. Schools are paid by local property taxes. Medicare and social security are separate.

Health care, welfare of citizens, and education are essentials. No one said that the government should have a lock on them. They had a fucking full frontal revolution in 1776 because England had the audacity to charge a whopping 10% tax. Americans, if you include all the taxes on that big ass list above, pay around 45% of everything they make to government. In more socialized countries like Canada its around 60%. That means that I need to work at my job for 6 months straight in order to pay my debt to the government each year.

I don’t know about you guys but I know very few people in my circle of acquaintances that earn more than 100K a year. The minimum wage, negotiated by the corporations by way of Washington lobby, is far below what it takes a person live comfortably. Even 9,10 or hell even 12 bucks an hour is a joke. Everyone could use some more money in their wallets.

Talk about greed too. If you take half my money away from me, you can bet I’m gonna be stingy as hell with the money I have left. Who wants to give to charity when your broke. It makes people greedy when you keep them poor. They are only talking socialized health care in hopes of shutting us the hell up. People think its a handout when it is gonna cost by way of tax.

I hear arguments talking about the ridiculous prices of ER visits. It’s totally true, they are. I have 4 stitches and it cost over 1200 dollars. It took like 5 minutes for the procedure and the fucking nurse did it. You can bet though that when the bill came It had a doctors name on it. Crazy prick billed me just because he was the doctor on duty.

Most Americans don’t exercise, we over eat, we do not obey surgeon generals warnings, we eat GMO’s and dont’ ever question what they are, we lay about dreaming as if civilization peaked when we hit the map and all the work is done…Party time. Those of us that aren’t born well to do, that may have mental defects, drug addictions and people that just need a second chance are thrown to the wayside. One thing that is magnificent about humanity is the empathy that we possess. No matter how broke we are we are always looking out for our fellow man.

We aren’t even given a chance to show what we could really do for one another. Rome had the same problem, they thought handouts in the form of socialized programs would help them. The citizens grew decadent. The programs hadn’t worked. We put faith into people that we don’t know but for some reason ,because of a campaign commercial, we vote for them. Then they get to decide what happens.

The congress get bombarded daily with gifts and junkets and lobbyists who take them and the whole staff out to lunch to discuss a business deal. Follow the money chain. Look at the voting patterns of your representatives. You won’t though, apparently I’m keeping people busy enough typing all this shit so they can tell me to get my tinfoil hat on, because you really don’t care.

What you want is what the corporations want… Power and something for nothing. Tell me tho, if take half of what you make and you take half of what I make, what are we left with. As I already said, not too many people are making six figure salaries here. So lets be fair and say that, except for the ever decreasing few that do make a good living, we all make between 13,000–70,000 dollars a year. That may seem like a vast difference to most Americans. To the Elite and those in Congress, it is a needle in the haystack. They deal in billions. Every time money changes hands, some one profits. What makes it different for the government.

Timothy Geithner, you know the head of the U.S. Treasury, doesn’t pay his income tax. I wonder why that is? Because it is a tool for the bankers in charge of the federal reserve to collect interest payments on the debt we owe them. They don’t have a problem with socialism, massive spending programs funded by our government mean equally massive interest payments. Another really funny aspect is that the dreaded IRS is concerned only with the income tax. They collect no other tax. They were established with the passing of the Income Tax law in 1913. The Federal Reserve was also created in 1913, this is not a coincidence.

The supreme court has already ruled, in the 1930’ i believe, that the Federal Reserve is unconstitutional. If you look at the constitution you see that it say Congress has the authority to issue currency, not a private, for-profit central bank. We got duped over 80 years ago. Check out what President Woodrow Wilson had to say after passing the Federal Reserve Act.

“I am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country. A great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit. Our system of credit is concentrated. The growth of the nation, therefore, and all our activities are in the hands of a few men. We have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated Governments in the civilized world no longer a Government by free opinion, no longer a Government by conviction and the vote of the majority, but a Government by the opinion and duress of a small group of dominant men.”

Henry Ford of the Ford Motor Company had this to say during the same time period

“It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.”

He didn’t say there would be a little protest, he said a revolution. President Wilson seemed pretty bummed out because of the situation he had made. Admittedly, I would probably sell the nation out if someone was going to kill a member of my family. There is the trouble. To much power and trust given to mere men.

If you don’t pay your income tax the IRS will take everything you own. Even the FBI agents fear the IRS, freeze your bank account, and garnish your wages. They are the Strong arm of the federal reserve. Reagan gave them even more power by making laws that would force employers to automatically take tax out of your pay. Our government also handed Fort Knox over to the Federal Reserve, they needed collateral on the debt we own them. After all they print it for us, and paper isn’t free you know.

Empathy for our fellow man will never leave our spirits. It gets tougher each day for us to provide our own bread, let alone the bread of another. The government hands out benefits in order to gain a vote, not to gain a nation of independent people providing for themselves and those in need.

Somewhere we messed up and thought that regular people need baby sat, that we indeed must think the problems facing humanity are out of your reach. How many of you have planted a garden? How many have produced something for yourself instead of relying on a corporation to make it for you? You may not have time. You are probably working very hard at at least one j.o.b., just over broke, in order to get money to buy all the things you want.

Sadly humans only live around 70 years, so your great-great grand parents aren’t here to slap you in the face until you wake up. They aren’t here to say, “now why would you go to the store for that, you could make it yourself like this”. Before you tell me to drink my kool-aid, consider that you just may be fucked and there is no way the government is getting you out of this hole your in.

We stop paying our credit cards, either on purpose out of spike or because we are too poor, and the credit card companies make a big fuss in Washington….presto a bailout. You can’t afford your house….voila , your debtor had been paid by T.A.R.P.. Do you get to keep your house, does your credit report score go up? No. Does the bank get to seize our home? Do you get slammed for years because of a credit score? Yes.

Great responsibility should be exercised when dealing with credit. It is a sly game indeed. Credit card companies can loan money that they make out of thin air, then if you default on the loan they get a house for under market value. Our current system is a means for the elite to own everything. They want to profit on every aspect of being human. A machine can easily replace you, except in the vital clinical trials for big pharma drugs, and you will get what you deserve. Low pay, high tax, loss of liberty and freedom. But hey, at least we are gonna get health care. At least we get education so that our kids can rank low as hell on international test scores. we get outta line at all and our asses are in prison. We after all have more prisoners per ca pita than any other country.

Seriously, if you wanna have a real debate, look at the claims. Before you tell me to shut the hell up and put my tinfoil hat on check out these videos. Watch “America: Freedom To Fascism” and “The Money Masters”.

http://www.editorialdigest.com/top/educate.html

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