Published: Tuesday, Dec. 4 2012 12:00 a.m. MST
If taxes are not TO BE punitive, they must be raised on everyone, equally;
otherwise, by definition, they are punitive.Eric may think that
taking another 2% or 5% of someone else's money would do no harm. If that
is the case, then he should be first in line to ask the President to raise his
taxes by that percent.All the businesses that I work with are on the
verge of closing. Technically, all of the owners are part of that "rich
guy" group targeted by Obama's tax increase. All of them need to make
substantial capital improvements to their companies. Capital improvements come
out of owner's equity - profits. They can't get loans and Obama is
telling them that he has more right to their money than they do. They will
close their businesses before they allow Obama to "target" them. ALL citizens must pay taxes - equally, I.e., the same tax rate.
Anything else is discriminatory.
Cut the military? The proper role of government is to protect life, liberty and
property. The President takes an oath of office to protect tis country from all
enemies foreign or domestic. We need the military to protect us from our
enemies and help other countries so they don't attack us. Of course
military can't be everywere but should be were our national interests and
prosperity lie.Taxes should be used for protection of life liberty
and property, City and state taxes have far more basis like Education and fire
and police. Not to take something someone else earned and give it to another.
Since government can't create wealth that would dry up things real quick.
Eric, nice letter, but you are missing the point of Grover's tax cutting
efforts. He isn't trying to balance the budget, he is trying to make the
federal government powerless and ineffective."My goal is to cut
government in half in twenty-five years, to get it down to the size where we can
drown it in the bathtub". Grover Norquist For
conservatives tax cutting is not about economics, it's about "starving
"All the businesses that I work with are on the verge of closing."That's funny Mike, because the business that I work for is
expanding. In fact, after being local for most of it's history, we've
been expanding during this "Great Recession." Perhaps the
businesses you work with are being mismanaged? Perhaps you folks are out of
touch with not providing a product or service that is in high demand? While you're too busy complaining about the economy and taxes and blaming
everything on Obama, many companies, like mine, are flourishing.Take
a look at yourself and your failing businesses. Be accountable. Before you blame
other persons or things on your failures. Be accountable. Many of us are seeing
great success right now. Provide a good/service in high demand and
it won't matter what the tax rate is or who is President.
Eric,If the increase is so small and will have no appreciable negative
effect on the economy, why shouldn’t all pay it? Why not roll back ALL
the cuts, including the payroll tax cut that has taken 1/6 of SS’s
funding?What do you consider small? 4.6 is over 13% of 35, so you
are really talking about an increase of over 13%; a 13% increase is small? And
at 39.6%, the top tax rate would be nearly twice what King Noah levied on his
people (before considerin local taxes). But I guess since it is other
people’s money you are talking about, you have no problem taking it.As for increasing the wages on which SS taxes can be levied – all
that does is kick the can down the road, since the level of SS benefits is based
on the amount paid in – increasing the wages subject to the tax increases
the benefits later paid to those who paid in.Taxes are evil when
they create and maintain a culture of dependency, where he who is idle eats the
bread and wears the garment of the laborer.
Well Eric, the plan congress and the president put in place, which we call the
fiscal cliff, will pretty much do just that. So let's just go with it and
see how it turns out. Republicans have no need to cave on their values.Just remember, they set this plan up to be so awful that it would force them
to negotiate a long term coherent plan to replace it, so they wouldn't
crash the economy. It would be better to go with a short term trial to find out
it fails, than put a long term disaster just like it into law.
Maverick, your reply to Mike is simply outstanding. Thank you.
Christian, just change one word in your comment and you'd be right.Change Republicans to Democrats and you'll have it correct.
Mike Richards,If the tax rates under consideration are no higher
than what we had under Reagan or Clinton, then that they would be rates proven
not to be problematic, right? Rates that have supported economic good times and
have had republican support, true?As to the flat tax, I don’t
think you would find any political appetite for someone making $10/hour paying
the same taxes as the person making $100/hour. NTW though, whenever I have
talked taxes with high earners, they are paying less than the middle class (as a
percentage).Higv,The military is certainly a
constitutional role. But what should be the percentage of our GDP going to the
military? Ours outstrips ANY other country by huge margins. I’m not
calling for disarmament, but we may need to take a hard look at whether we need
all we pay for.
"Cut the military? The proper role of government is to protect life, liberty
and property."Absolutely cut the military! How much do we need
to outspend China before you folks consider us safe? 10x? 20x? 100x?Do you realize that we spend over 5x as much on defense spending as #2 China?
10x as much than #3 Russia? I'm pretty sure if anybody wanted to start
something, we could handle them, easily.The other issue is with
nation building. As long as we keep giving our children away and blank checks to
the government, they'll keep putting us into voluntary wars. Much like your
"starve the beast" mentality when it comes to taxes, lets "starve
the beast" in military. Only then, will we use our armed forced for real
threats, NOT NATION BUILDING.Lastly, why is it that repubs suspect
all social programs in the government to be full of corruption and incompetence
but give the military a free pass? If food stamps and SS are being abused, why
not the military? Do you realize that they spent $5 billion on new pixilated
uniforms which don't work? Now they're going back to the originals.
Talk about wasteful spending!
There is still something wrong with the story Mr. Richards is telling. The
owners he is talking about own businesses that need capital
improvements..can't get loans..& make profits over $250,000 a year. I
dare any of you to call your local loan officer and check this out..it's
nonsense. These guys are spewing pure right wing ideology..and I'll bet
all of them are in business in four years. The alternative is that they have a
very bad bank. Also, if you make over $250,000 and have to close your business
because you're going to pay an additional 3% in taxes on the monies you
make over $250,000 you're not a very good manager or...and extremely greedy
Taxes are indeed punitive for at least three reasons;#1: Taxes takes money
out of the private sector that could have been used to build business, hire
people, create wealth and expand economies. California, one of the highest taxed
states in the country is an excellent example.#2: Our progressive tax
system punishes success and forces business over seas (China). The legacy of
high taxes in America= "Made in China".#3: Much of our taxes are
wasted and squandered by the government. Solyndra, GSA scandals, fast and
furious are some recent examples. Unlike the private sector, the government has
no competitor to force them to be efficient.
Take another $10 million from Bill Gates and he probably won't even notice
it. Give $10 each to a million homeless drunks on the streets who will
immediately go buy a bottle and drink themselves into a blind stupor.That may make a bunch of people happy for a day. It might stimulate the
business of the local bar or liquor store, but if you think such action will be
a net benefit to society, you are just plain wrong.The best place
for that $10 million is in the hands of the guy who earned it - Mr. Gates. He
will probably use it to employ a 100 people to build something useful for the
rest of us.My example may be extreme, but that is what happens to
far too much of our tax money. Take it away from those who would use it
productively and give it to those who would waste it away because they never
earned it. Do that 16 trillion times and the nation goes the way of Greece.
There's an excellent book everyone who cares should read. Doesn't
matter if you think of yourself as right, left, Dem or Repub."Who Stole the American Dream?" by Hedrick Smith is a carefully
researched and objective look at how we got where we are now. It lays
responsibility on those who deserve to bear it. Democrats, Republicans, Banks,
Wall Street, corporations. He lays the facts out for readers to digest and then
decide for themselves.Please read it if you care at all about trying
to make America a better place for everyone.All of us who comment
here have a responsibility to at least make an effort to learn facts rather than
simply spouting empty opinions.
I think that it is the level of taxation and the individuals and entities that
are taxed that are the problem.Consider that over sixteen percent of
our workforce works for government and is wholly paid for by the
taxpayers.Although this is less than the proportion supported in socialist
Sweden and the other Scandinavian nations, but it is more than in France,
Germany, Spain, Italy, Portugal, often referred to as "socialist"
European nations) and less than Israel incidentally. Our Corporate
tax is the highest in the world which drives corporations into foreign nations
whose taxes are not so punitive and regressive. It robs us of jobs and increases
dependence. We have substantial taxes levied on income, business, purchases,
property which collectively are a drag on the eonomy and a burden on most of the
people.There is room for cuts in what is called "defense"
but is often not defensive at all, and there is also much room for cuts in
expensive and negative bureaucracies which could be obtained fairly quickly
through attrition, early retirement options etc.
"Take another $10 million from Bill Gates and he probably won't even
notice it. Give $10 each to a million homeless drunks on the streets who will
immediately go buy a bottle and drink themselves into a blind stupor."And then you folks wonder why your party is looked at as the party for
the rich? The party who demeans so many Americans?Is it any question
why you folks are losing ground politically with each passing day? Shessh! What hateful hogwash!
Excellent letter, Eric. What most of the commenters here don't understand
is that Obama's proposal will affect only those with TAXABLE income over
$250,000 (really $223,050 for married filing jointly). That means after all
credits, deductions, and exemptions. If you work up a simple form 1040, with
minimal credits and deductions, you find that a small business owner would have
to clear at least $400,000 in profit before the Obama tax increases have any
effect at all. Obama's proposal raises rates only in the two
top tax bracket, one from 33 to 36 percent, the other from 35 to 39.6 percent.
The first increase would apply only to TAXABLE income between $223,050 and
$398,350. The second would apply only to TAXABLE income over $398,350. To reach
the threshold for the top bracket, a small business owner would have to clear
profit of well over a half million dollars. That's after all business
expenses. The effective tax increase on someone earning $400,000 would be a
little over 1 percent.And this is what all the fighting is over? No,
liberal larry is right.
The U.S. accounts for 47 percent of all military spending on the planet. We have
700 to 800 military bases in foreign countries. We employ about 80,000 military
personnel in Germany, another 50,000 in South Korea and Japan. The Pentagon is
one of the largest landowners on earth. According to Republicans, we need to
increase our military presence. Really now. World War II ended
almost 70 years ago. The Cold War ended over 20 years ago. We need this much
military might to fight Al Qaeda? To keep a presence in Iraq and Afghanistan? Or
are we planning on invading Iran and North Korea?
One old man,You've been talking about the Hedrick Smith book for some
time now. It sounds interesting; I put it on my Christmas list. If my kids
don't get it for me, I'll get it myself.
I call "BS" (Bogus Story) on Mountanman's claims why taxes are
punitive.#1: Those tax dollars that Mountanman claims are siphoned
out of the economy and vanish down some mysterious black hole really go to
hiring government employees and funding grants and government contracts. Those
government employees use their salaries to pay for housing, transportation,
food, clothing, healthcare, entertainment, etc., funneling that money back into
the economy. Grant recipients and government contractors purchase supplies,
services, and durable goods, and pay employees (who spend their salaries more or
less like the government employees do), again funneling that money back into the
economy.#2: Corporate taxes are not the main reason that businesses
relocate overseas. The #1 reason that businesses relocate to other countries is
labor costs. The very existence of WalMart is based on the fact that for some
merchandise, it is cheaper to manufacture in some sweatshop in Macau or Sri
Lanka and import than it is to manufacture domestically. The flip-side is that
the sweatshop laborers earn less than 1/10th of what they would here, work 60-70
hours/week, and have a standard of living comparable to our homeless.(continued…)
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