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Old 03-24-2011, 09:32 PM   #121
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Why not? Is this just a private prejudice of yours?
I should have clarified that I believe that tax increases aren't the answer in the near term - trying to climb out of a recession in a period of high unemployment. The current administration took a look at tax increases and realized that we would be in danger of slipping back into the mess we just left if taxes were increased now. So they rightfully extended the Bush tax cuts. So no it's not a private prejudice of mine - the last two administrations agree.
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:45 PM   #122
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Is it just me, or is it getting warm in here?

Raise taxes, cut spending! There, done...
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:49 PM   #123
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Raise taxes, cut spending! There, done...
Cut taxes, cut spending even more. I like mine better.
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:55 PM   #124
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instead you just ignorantly state that everything i said was my opinion and you continue to just attack me.

You've complained repeatedly being "attacked" whenever someone takes exception to something subjective you have posted; and that people aren't reading your posts completely before responding. Sorry, but you aren't and they have.

I'm not attacking you, I'm disagreeing with you.
You need to learn the difference.
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:56 PM   #125
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Raise taxes, cut spending! There, done...
Now you've done it...
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:07 PM   #126
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Cut taxes, cut spending even more. I like mine better.
Why? It's so much easier just to keep printing the money - that way no body has to pay more taxes and nobody has their entitlements cut.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:19 PM   #127
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Originally Posted by Independent

I didn't intend to say we can't balance the budget by simply cutting expenses. I said we can't balance it by cutting federal employee costs - they make up just a small percent of the total budget. If we want to balance by cutting expenses, we need to go where the money is - and that includes SS and Medicare. AFAIK, cutting SS by 33% means making the average SS check 33% smaller.

You seem to think that the rich are getting poorer and the poor are getting richer. I've never seen any data to support that notion. Do you have a source? Each year we use some of the tax dollars collected from higher income people to support current consumption of very low income people, but that's not what you wrote.
Here's one source, but it doesn't include table data for 2009

http://www.taxfoundation.org/news/show/250.html
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:21 PM   #128
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I should have clarified that I believe that tax increases aren't the answer in the near term - trying to climb out of a recession in a period of high unemployment. The current administration took a look at tax increases and realized that we would be in danger of slipping back into the mess we just left if taxes were increased now. So they rightfully extended the Bush tax cuts. So no it's not a private prejudice of mine - the last two administrations agree.
What's the rationale for small tax increases hurting the economy? I'm not an economist but it seems to me that if the money goes to the government they are going to spend it immediately resulting in a boost to the economy. On the other hand, if I pay less taxes, I'm just going to save and build my cash reserves or invest it in stocks. It's not clear to me how this would help the job situation or the economy as a whole.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:27 PM   #129
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Why? It's so much easier just to keep printing the money - that way no body has to pay more taxes and nobody has their entitlements cut.
Oh, so the Nazis were actually trying to help us.

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Old 03-24-2011, 10:29 PM   #130
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What's the rationale for small tax increases hurting the economy? I'm not an economist but it seems to me that if the money goes to the government they are going to spend it immediately resulting in a boost to the economy. On the other hand, if I pay less taxes, I'm just going to save and build my cash reserves or invest it in stocks. It's not clear to me how this would help the job situation or the economy as a whole.
I'm going to have to dig out my letter from my Congressman Duncan D. Hunter. I asked about the whole stimulus thing coming to California. He was very proud that about 1/4 of the stimulus money actually went to trying to create jobs. 75% waste doesn't seem to boost an economy to me.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:38 PM   #131
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What's the rationale for small tax increases hurting the economy? I'm not an economist but it seems to me that if the money goes to the government they are going to spend it immediately resulting in a boost to the economy. On the other hand, if I pay less taxes, I'm just going to save and build my cash reserves or invest it in stocks. It's not clear to me how this would help the job situation or the economy as a whole.
I believe that people spending money would benefit the economy more than if gov't spent it.

And I'm like you - I put my tax refund in the bank. this will help the bottom line of the banks. It may be their best source of income given all the bad loans out there. Same thing stocks - investment in stocks helps the economy.

But I don't believe many people will invest the tax savings. Many can't afford to, and besides - there's a lot of flat screens and iPads out there to buy.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:42 PM   #132
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You've complained repeatedly being "attacked" whenever someone takes exception to something subjective you have posted; and that people aren't reading your posts completely before responding. Sorry, but you aren't and they have.

I'm not attacking you, I'm disagreeing with you.
You need to learn the difference.
and yet still you wont discuss the historical facts i posted, you would rather make this about me.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:50 PM   #133
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I believe that people spending money would benefit the economy more than if gov't spent it.
$20 million lost to trying to harness brain powers on government spending, or $20 million spent into an economy boost that economy by civilians boosts an economy better?

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But I don't believe many people will invest the tax savings. Many can't afford to, and besides - there's a lot of flat screens and iPads out there to buy.
I wonder if the IRS or economists have any numbers. A quick Google search has polls saying people are planning on spending less and saving more, but who knows if what they say is what they do.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:59 PM   #134
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I believe that people spending money would benefit the economy more than if gov't spent it.
maybe, maybe not but that presupposes that the people will actually spend it, which from the following it appears you arent convinced they will.

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And I'm like you - I put my tax refund in the bank. this will help the bottom line of the banks. It may be their best source of income given all the bad loans out there.
the banks dont need anymore help, they are doing fine with the bail out and the artificially low interest rates. and those banks arent helping the economy with all the money they are making as they are still very tight with loans.

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Same thing stocks - investment in stocks helps the economy.
investing in stocks right now only inflates the price of stocks, how does that help the economy? seems to me it just makes for a more risky environment by pushing the P/E back up, thus creating an environment just begging for another correction/collapse.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:10 PM   #135
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investing in stocks right now only inflates the price of stocks, how does that help the economy? seems to me it just makes for a more risky environment by pushing the P/E back up, thus creating an environment just begging for another correction/collapse.

For every dollar that someone spends buying stocks, someone gets a dollar from selling stocks (with the intermediaries getting a cut and, if the seller has made a profit, possibly the tax collectors as well).

There is plenty of documentation about the wealth effect - if people feel wealthier, they are more likely to spend which will boost the economy.

There is also the fact that higher stock prices make it easier for companies to raise capital for new investment (or other purposes) which is also a good thing.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:12 PM   #136
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maybe, maybe not but that presupposes that the people will actually spend it, which from the following it appears you arent convinced they will.
But that presupposes the government will spend it well, which it doesn't have a rich and splendid history of doing either.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:14 PM   #137
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They aren't saying that it is impossible to cut expenses enough to balance the budget. They are saying it is impossible to do it in the way you described (which was backed up by your "gut feeling" that there was plenty of easy "waste" to trim).

You can balance the budget without raising taxes, but it involves some dramatic changes in what we expect to get from government. Our Defense budget would need to be slashed to what it would take to actually defend our country from attack, rather than the current "Undisputed Ruler of the World" budget we have now. We would need to reduce Social Security benefits. We would need to change Medicare/Medicaid so that they only pay for a much more basic set of health care benefits than they currently do. We would need to stop paying farm subsidies (Not a huge part of the budget, just my particular pet peeve).

Or we could do some of of the above and go back to the tax structure that we under Clinton. IMO, the best Republican president that we've had since Reagan

Contrary to the view that "business and upper income individuals are increasing shackled by gov't actions that are essentially redistributing wealth", we've been mostly cutting taxes for the wealthy for 30 years straight, with a couple of modest bumps up along the way.

The extremely wealthy in this country have never had a better deal than they currently do. They pay a 15% capital gains and dividend rate. Their marginal rate of 35% is actually lower than the self-employed guy making $100k/year (28% income plus 14% FICA).

Would it really be the end of the world to go back to a 20% rate on cap gains and dividends?

Is there a reason that we want the income earned from work to be taxed at a much higher rate than investment income?
I agree with a lot of what you're saying. But my view of "business and upper income individuals" is not the "extremely wealthy" you refer to. I'm talking about the upper half of income earners.

I'll cite an example. A small business owner making less than 100k can't max out his or her 401k due to "compliance testing" where it is found that the lower paid employees do not benefit from the plan as much as the higher paid employees. The gov't solution? A safe harbor plan where the owner is forced to contribute an amount equal to 3% of each employee's earnings - even to employees that weren't in the plan. Then the owner can max out his or her own contribution, but it results in a personal loss because the cost of the "safe harbor" exceeds the owner's personal gain.

No - it wouldn't be the end of the world to increase the rate on cap gains and dividends. But it's like a parent giving a kid an allowance. Would you give the kid a bigger allowance if the kid spent it foolishly?
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:22 PM   #138
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jdw, let me help you out.

These are opinions:

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the banks dont need anymore help, they are doing fine with the bail out and the artificially low interest rates. and those banks arent helping the economy with all the money they are making as they are still very tight with loans.
These are facts:

FDIC: Failed Bank List

FRB: Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey: January 2011

FDIC: Bank Data Guide
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:37 PM   #139
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Don't worry about wealth inequality. In the end, this tends to be sorted out through reliable historical processes.

The process of wealth condensation causes newly created wealth to become concentrated in the hands of those who are already wealthy under certain conditions. A small initial inequality is amplified over time from economic positive feedback.

Anyone who's observed a system governed by positive feedback knows that eventually the system is going to hit the rails. That's when things get interesting. Just ask the Czars, or the French Second Estate...
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:45 PM   #140
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Anyone who's observed a system governed by positive feedback knows that eventually the system is going to hit the rails. That's when things get interesting. Just ask the Czars, or the French Second Estate...
Or:

7 Modern Dictators Way Crazier Than You Thought Possible | Cracked.com

The 5 Most Shockingly Insane Modern Dictators | Cracked.com
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