Regarding those 70-90% income tax rates that class warriors salivate over:
NOBODY PAID THEM. First, they started at the inflation-adjusted
level of about $2.5 million AGI. Second (and more importantly), the pre-1986
deduction and depreciation rules were much more relaxed. The effective tax rate
paid by the highest income earners was below 40% -- basically right about where
it is now. And if you had a good accountant, it was lower.
Ah, but you can't consider payroll taxes without also counting the benefits
that the payroll taxes buy you. When you consider both sides of the equation
(as, to be consistent, you must), low-income earners pay negative payroll tax --
they ultimately get more out of the system than they pay in. With people who
earn more, the return on their payroll-tax "investment" is negative,
because part of their contributions is redistributed to finance those earning
less.This is not a comment on whether this is a good or bad way to
run things -- it's just to point out that the essay does not tell the full
story. The writer should, and probably does, know better.
Creating a system in which the poor rely on government handouts to survive
isn't equivalent to giving them energy juice - it's giving them
VanceoneProvo, UTLDS Liberal: I recommend you read our LDS
leader's frequent and long running remarks on the evils-yes, evils-- of the
government dole.========= I recommned you read our LDS
leader's Bishops's Handbook.Bishops are to encourge or
suggest the use of "Government provided social services".Are
you saying the LDS Bishop's Handbook is advocating the use of
LDS Liberal: I recommend you read our LDS leader's frequent and long
running remarks on the evils-yes, evils-- of the government dole. Try reading
the welfare session of conference in, I believe, Oct 79. Then ask yourself how
anyone could conceive of any good LDS member pushing for government welfare as a
"good thing." The problem with governmental and liberal
ideas of welfare is that: they use force to extract funds from the productive
members of society and just hand them out willy nilly to everyone who lies on an
application, with no requirements (after all, Obama's killed the great
welfare compromise Clinton and the Republicans came up with in the 90s, that
dramatically shrunk the welfare rolls.) Government dole is meant to make
people dependent on government; thus removing the choice from the people and
giving government power over them. It is soul crushing, deadening, and a form
of slavery. You leftists love it. Why do you love an instrument of enslaving
people to the government?
Mister J,I hope you're not in the tech industry because it
would be embarrassing if you think Utah is not growing is good jobs. We
basically have silicon valley mini version starting up here.
@ordinaryfolksseattle, WA As a progressive and a proud
liberal, I am for helping these people out when they do slip into poverty. Seems
to me it is the "Christian" thing to do, help others. However, these
radical conservatives and self identified "Christians" don't
believe in society, through government which we elect, to do this.======== Agreed.And unto Mormons or Christians or any
other "religion" can claim 100% membership in America -- Government - of
the people, for the people - will be the unbiased answer.As a
"Christian" - Jesus never once said only a "Church" could
provide charity for people, he only said to "DO IT", and left it up to
us to figure out and determine HOW.We will be judge by our
individual "intentions" of our hearts.
Obviously, I don't live in the same America as many of the radical
conservatives on this blog. The economy is better, the unemployment rate has
been reduced and the stock market is really, really doing well. What I do hear from most of the radical conservatives is a lot of name calling
and even more fear. It would seem that many of these posters are scared to
death of drifting into poverty. As a progressive and a proud liberal, I am for
helping these people out when they do slip into poverty. Seems to me it is the
"Christian" thing to do, help others. However, these radical
conservatives and self identified "Christians" don't believe in
society, through government which we elect, to do this.I don't
respond well to fear mongering or greed. Therefore, I read these posts by the
radical conservatives and feel great pity for their fear and loathing. Very sad
that the country has come to this. (and P.S., it is not Obama's fault - it
is a self inflicted wound.)
Re: "Robin Hood in reverse"What's really perverse is
how liberals cynically conflate their failure to filch ever more in taxes from
those that already pay all income taxes and most of the rest, as well.It's the equivalent of suggesting that Ferguson, MO looters gave an
unfair advantage to the businesses they didn't loot -- one that liberals
could only think to remedy by requiring all stores to be looted.Perverse, indeed.
LDS LiberalFrom the Holocaust on wiki."On 29 January 1943,
another decree ordered the deportation of all German Romani to
Auschwitz.""The death toll was at least 130,000 of the nearly one
million Romani in Nazi-controlled Europe."There is nothing there
saying they were in the country illegally. The Romanians sent to the camps were
German Romani, citizens of Germany. Or they were Romanians in Nazi controlled
@VanceoneProvo, UTTake the poor person; handicapped, cannot
work, obviously needs some help. The Conservative view, and the Christian
view... ======== I try not to take offense -- butI grow every so sick and tired of guys like you constantly saying
"Liberals" can NOT be Christians!FYI -- Jesus happened
to be a Liberal.The Pharisees were the Conservatives.
Thid BarkerVictor, IDAmerica has THE highest corporate taxes in the
world, period, 10:03 a.m. Aug. 21, 2014[Wrong -- Have to call
you on that lie Thid. Even right-wing Forbes magazine gives that honor to
JAPAN.]========== RichardBMurray, UTHitler never blamed illegal immigrants. He blamed legal Jewish immigrants as
part of his plan to round them up. If you have reputable proof otherwise, I
would like to see it.1:59 p.m. Aug. 21, 2014[Yes Hitler did --
Romanian Gypsies where illegal immigrants. along with Liberals,
Communists, Gays, Abortion Doctors, the mentally and physically disabled to
work, homeless, poor, etc. see "the Holocaust" on wiki]
I am a conservative and agree that certain tax credits or subsidies are not well
thought out. However, what Ms. Barker seems to be trying to say (truthfully, I
can't say that I know what she is really trying to say - since it the facts
and figures that are pushed out in the article seem to be random and arbitrary,
and she offers no recommendation for a solution)that everything is skewed to
support the wealthy. Might it not be argued that many of the tax policies are
designed to increase production. Production is what produces jobs and income.
Yes, there is too much government involvement in all of our lives - especially
on a national level. Liberals seem to always believe that everything is unfair
while ignoring their own pet projects that violate the very principles that they
are arguing for. As a conservative, I believe that the local level of government
best deals with these issues simply because it has the ability to respond to the
individual needs of the community better than an abstract philosophy in some
capital city far far away.
Just remember, liberals are very generous.... with your money, not theirs. Take the poor person; handicapped, cannot work, obviously needs some
help. The Conservative view, and the Christian view, would be that that
person's family, if possible, take over. Failing that, the community: the
person's church, or the local charities. Someone who knows the guy (or
girl) and can respond to his or her needs. If necessary, the conservative will
take the lasagna over.The liberal solution is to take money out of someone
in Iowa's pocket by force, run it through a untold layers of bureaucracy,
half being diverted to the local Union leader's slush fund, before the
remaining 2 pennies are parceled out by some impenetrable formulae and you have
to fill out a 200 page form in triplicate, then wait 8 months. And this,
says the left, is the absolute best we can do; any attacks on all that fraud,
waste, etc is mean spirited.Meanwhile, a liberal never dips into their own
pocket to help out. That's what taxes are for, right? Compare and contrast
Joe Biden charity with Mitt Romney's. Liberals spend your money, not
theirs, on their priorities, not yours.
Hey JoeCapitalist2 -"Conservatives are more than willing to
state a lower limit on taxes (e.g. a 15% flat tax) that we are willing to let
everyone pay."A flat tax is complete nonsense.Who
(aside from the former USSR) has used or uses a flat tax? Want to
know why America has never used a flat tax? . . . Because they don’t
work.A graduated income tax however does work, especially one where
the highest earners pay a HIGH percentage of income in taxes.The
proof is in the pudding. You have no pudding to prove the worth of your flat
tax, but merely a recipe that would be pure poison if implemented.On the other hand, the thriving economies, the low deficits, and the
occasional budget surpluses coincident with a 70% and above high tax bracket
demonstrates CLEARLY that a policy of high taxes for high earners has been
good for this nation . . . Prior to the advent of greed-based Reaganism and the
unworkable Trickle-down economics that still hold this nation back from
achieving success.Yes, the proof is in the pudding.And
high taxes for high earners creates a pretty tasty pudding for this nation and
To "GaryO" actually, trickle down economics does not create more poverty
because for the rich to get richer, they have to make money at their businesses.
The more money their businesses make, the more they can grow and expand. The
more businesses expand, the fewer available workers remain looking for jobs.
When labor is scarce, the cost of labor rises. As the cost of labor rises,
poverty decreases.You would understand that if you understood basic
Daniel L -- It's a form of subsidy because the tax law said you owed the
tax, and voila, now you don't. So if you believe in taxes and do not think
our society can effectively run on good wishes and smiles, then yes, you owe
your share of taxes. When you get a deduction for buying a house, you are
paying less of your share than the person who couldn't afford a house. So
yeah, it's a subsidy to those who are better off.
@Vanceone "Are the poor still there? Yes, and there's more now than
ever (Thanks Obama!). Democrats subsidize poverty, lawlessness, immorality, and,
to be brutally honest: You leftists LOVE people being poor. Because they are
dependent on you; right? You always, always scream "Vote Democrat because
evil Republicans want you to starve!!!!!" Just like several have in this
thread. "You right wingers look at the political system, but
neglect the economic. Our is a politico economic system. American capital
(corporations) has abandoned the United States in favor of investment in foreign
nations, especially China. The decline of the American middle class is due to
this process, aided and abetted by politicians at times, but the employers are
the driving force.The problem is our current brand of capitalism in
which corporations owe no national loyalty. And no I don't like
people being poor. Nor do I want them to be dependent on me in any way. And I
am not a liberal.
@Meadowman -- People have got to live somewhere. I'm not sure why giving a
mortgage deduction helps the housing sector. If people weren't getting a
subsidy to own a house they would still have to live somewhere, just maybe not
with the taxpayers help.
@Thid and Vanceone. Christians know they "own" nothing; they are simply
temporary stewards. They know it's possible to "rob" the poor by
keeping more than they need. They know that the program is indeed that the poor
will be lifted by the rich being humbled. They believe that this is all
voluntary - and it is. I would ask: what is the problem with the
government (us) asking you to do something you've already been commanded to
do? The consequences for choosing to ignore either are jail or everlasting
torment. Which is worse?
I hate to see when people vilify the poor and apply a broad label as
"immoral, lazy, ignorant", etc. opportunities for learning, networking,
and fair treatment are not even close to the levels of abundance that the middle
and upper classes enjoy (which I am prob middle class). It's hard to get a
job these days even with an advanced degree.they may have the ability to improve
their situation but they start at the goal line and we start at touchback. We
may still have the same goal but they are disadvantaged to begin with. It seems the ultimate fix would be the need for little government
intervention and private charitable people who share their wealth. As we can
see, we do t have that kind of society and it seems that government needs to
intervene. The welfare system is not effective, but neither is corporate
welfare bc it rarely trickles down to the lowest class.
re: kiddsport"When was the last time you saw a liberal-run
municipality result in anything but bankrupt?"Yet, its liberal
areas (Boston, Silicon Valley, Seattle, & Austin (getting more liberal))
where a Lions share of the technological innovations occur.Whereas
Utah is good for call centers, MLM's, & other shady financial service
OK libs. I've read from all of you over and over for years now that this
economy, and now from some of you the huge debt, are all the responsibility of
Bush, Reagan, and the Republicans. (funny that you seem to conviently forget
that President Clinton came in there too.) So. Since our weak economy that
Obama has presided over for going on 6 years is not his doing, it stands to
reason that if this economy changes for the better in the next two years, it
won't be Obamas doing either. We OK with that? You all continue to act as
if Bush and the Republicans have been in power since Reagan, and only last
Tuesday did Obama become President. If you will not finally admit that a
President has to take responsibility for his presidency, especially when things
are bad, then don't try to spike the football if things become good. If
they do become good, well.......... It's Bushs fault.
We've spent trillions on Democratic handouts to the poor; those trillions
being stolen by government from the productive; ever since Johnsons "Great
Society." And what have we got for spending those trillions? Are the poor
still there? Yes, and there's more now than ever (Thanks Obama!).
Democrats subsidize poverty, lawlessness, immorality, and, to be brutally
honest: You leftists LOVE people being poor. Because they are dependent on you;
right? You always, always scream "Vote Democrat because evil Republicans
want you to starve!!!!!" Just like several have in this thread. Republicans want poor people to not be poor: by becoming self sufficient. By
gaining a skill and becoming a productive citizen. Democrats want us all
enslaved to them, so we vote for them because that's all we can do to
survive. Republicans are "the party of the rich," they would prefer
everyone to be rich. Democrats are the party of the poor, and they do their
best to make everyone poor (except for the "elite Democrats" of course--
Obama and Hillary can't be expected to grovel in the mud like the rest of
us poor plebs.
How does a conversation like this get reversed? That if the government
doesn't take it from you, it becomes a form of subsidy? If this article is
based on truth, then all take home income is subsidized by the government,
simply because it was taken from you!
Open Minded MormonHitler never blamed illegal immigrants. He blamed
legal Jewish immigrants as part of his plan to round them up. If you have
reputable proof otherwise, I would like to see it.
6 years of wealth redistribution from a President who was a scholar of Alinsky,
2 years of which controlled the House, Senate and the White House. The
Democrats got -exactly- the leadership and polices they wanted. Yet, look at
this article, it's still not enough. They're still complaining.This is insanity. Isn't 6 years of liberalism and wealth
redistribution enough evidence to show that it doesn't work? No,
apparently not. We "dumb Faux News fans" are just too brainwashed to
GaryO: "Poor people who are Liberal...want a chance to climb out of poverty,
and they know that "Conservative" Republican leadership will never let
them have that opportunity."Most of the poor who are liberals do
not want to "climb" out of poverty, they want to ride the elevator out
of it in their easy chair. If you want to work for it, Republicans are more than
willing to let you have that opportunity."Your own stuff? Like
the money that should be going to taxes? Ever heard of the social contract? So
many "Conservatives" seem to believe that they owe NOTHING to the
nation..."No conservative believes we owe NOTHING. We just
object to the government getting a bigger piece of our labors (without doing any
of the work or taking any of the risks) than we do.Conservatives are
more than willing to state a lower limit on taxes (e.g. a 15% flat tax) that we
are willing to let everyone pay. Liberals will never put an upper limit (e.g.
80%) that they are personally willing to pay along with all the others they
expect to pay.
The reason I am a firm believer in being a Democrat is the belief that America
needs to be fair place to all, not just to the wealthy. The majority of the
Republican Party has been known as the preserver of the rich and powerful,
preserving and making sure that corporations and businesses can make and keep
their profits made by the worker and laborers. The Republican Party appears
dedicated to maintain a two-class society and the freedoms of the elite.
Instead of the French Revolution by the masses, America established a political
system that entrenches the class system and avoid shifting power over to the
majority of the people and only provides the appearance that the people have
power and control over their government.
Vanceone,To all the poor people - make sure you read Vanceone's
comment to get an honest look at how conservatives view poor people. Nothing
but, "weed smoking thugs on the street." (Direct quote from Vanceone).
Wow, that's quite the judgement call there Vanceone. "Indolent & unworthy the beggar may be-but that is not your concern:
It is better, said Joseph Smith, to feed 10 impostors than to run the risk of
turning away one honest petition." -Hugh Nibley's Approaching Zion
VanceoneProvo, UTYou complained, but did not suggest a single
solution, Btw - Hitler was faced with a similar situation...Huge national debt from his countries previous war,a Hemorraging
economy.Poverty, Homelessness, addictions, Ghettos, He
blamed all his nations problems on the -- poor, terminally ill, Jews, Liberals, Communists, Illegal immigrants, Gays,
Lesbians, etc... So, what do you suggest?a similar
situation, a similar "Final Solution"?
Karen R from Houston --Absolutely excellent. A thoughtful and well
state comment that is right on the spot.
Congratulations, all of you who own a home, or who are fortunate enough to have
put a little bit away in an IRA or a 401(k). The left now considers you to be a
rich welfare sponge. You are a burden on society. Don't you feel ashamed
for planning for your future? Don't worry, the state will take care of
you. Stop thinking for yourself.
Hey Redshirt - “Who wants trickle up poverty due to socialism?”Trickle up poverty comes from trickle down economics.In
Trickle Down Economics, the wealthy are supposed to create jobs for the Middle
Class and the poor. But they don’t. This nation has been going downhill
ever since we started babying the rich.The wealthy get wealthier, and the
poor and middle class get poorer.If you want to eliminate trickle up
poverty, then we need to eliminate trickle down economics.Let’s tax
the highest earners a LOT more . . . Like we did back in the days when this
nation could actually pay its bills.We now know what works and what
does not work.I’m advocating a simple policy:Let’s do what works.
In the liberal view: You are poor, helpless, pitiful, incapable, and need the
government to take care of you, wipe your nose, and powder your bum, but the
second you start contributing to society, you are evil and the government has a
solemn duty to seize all your proceeds from your labor and give it to people who
will blow it on some weed. Nothing says charity like stealing
someone's income and giving it to a bunch of thugs on the street who have
no plans to ever work, and if you complain, you are a heartless racist wretch!
And you can't be Christian if you don't agree that government theft of
your property is necessary and what Jesus would have preached: that you owe
everything to the all powerful government, and you should be grateful that Obama
hasn't taken 100 % yet, but since you still have some, you are evil and
should give it all to Barack now so he can give it to his peeps. Right liberals? That's the essential meaning of all of your arguments,
as well as this article: that theft is great, as long as its the government
President Obama and President Snow of the Hunger Games - hard to tell them apart
from an ideology standpoint.
@ IDC in BoiseI wanted to add to your list of solutions:Make sure you're born with an adequate IQ - something above 110 is
recommended. Below that you have a 50/50 chance of living in poverty.Also recommended is choosing white skin. Being white and male is an
especially good choice, but being white, female, and smart will get you a long
way these days, too. And don't forget to choose a healthy dose of ambition
and physical attractiveness. They're really helpful in a competitive
free-market system.Other suggestions: - Don't be
born to substance-abusing parents or to a single parent without a high school
education. - Don't be raised in a neighborhood where the schools are
bad. - Make sure your dad doesn't leave the family, particularly if
your mom isn't well educated. - Don't be born with a learning
disability, a mental illness, or a physical disability.Overall, just
don't choose to be born into poverty. You're chances of getting out
won't be very good. We've got the data that backs this up
and now you've been warned. Choose wisely or the only one you can blame is
Redshirt1701Deep Space 9, UtIt is nice to see that all of the
liberals are supporting socialism once again.====== Likewise, It's always nice to all the "conservatives" who
rant daily and HATE Socialism, but won't think twice about taking
Social Security, Medicare, and every other Social Programs they feel
"entitled" too...I wish they had the intellectual honesty to
just be HONEST.
I think many of the "conservatives" here are straining at the gnat of
welfare to the poor, but swallowing (eww!) the camel of corporate incentives.
Shame on you wolves in sheep's clothing who pray openly while secretly
rejecting the homeless street preacher Jesus.
Agreed -- Prof. Barker has done it again.It's sad to see
'certain' parties cheer Corporate Welfare and their Billionaires, and deride PEOPLE who need welfare just to eat.Sort of that old
Nephite sin of -- worshipping the rich, loviing war, siding with the
business of Gadianton's, while trampling and grinding the faces of
the poor...Zoramites, and their Rameumpton [God blesses us, and made
us better than others, ect.] seems to best describe what I see happening
in here in Utah's Latter-Day Zarahemla...The Nephites were not
destroyed for same-sex marriage, madical marijuana, or abortions -- but
they were destroyed for how they treated their poor, sick and elderly --
"the least of these"...Ironically, God uses the ignorant and
the wicked to punish the Righteous, who SHOULD know better....
Kiddsport -"When was the last time you saw a liberal-run
municipality result in anything but bankrupt? "If you
didn't get your "news" exclusively lying Right-Wing Propaganda
mills, you'd have a much more realistic perspective.Plenty of
"liberal-run municipalities" do just fine.. . . Austin, San
Francisco, Boston, Hartford, etc.Besides, you're putting the
cart before the horse.Poor people who are Liberal . . . Are NOT poor
because they're Liberal, they are Liberal because they want a chance to
climb out of poverty, and they know that "Conservative" Republican
leadership will never let them have that opportunity.Hey JTB -"We please stop calling it a government "handout" when it
benevolently decides to let you keep more of your own stuff?"Your own stuff? . . . Like the money that should be going to taxes?Ever heard of the social contract?So many "Conservatives"
seem to believe that they owe NOTHING to the nation that created the environment
within which they can succeed.JFK said "Ask not what your
country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country."But all too many self-described Patriotic Conservatives do just the OPPOSITE.
It is nice to see that all of the liberals are supporting socialism once
again.Lets look at the welfare. It is intended to be a "safety
net". What is a safety net? If you work high above the ground a safety net
is there to prevent you from dying. It is not there to help you rebound and
return to your original position. The current US welfare system does more than
just prevent death, it provides excessive benefits and allows the poor to live
better than many in the middleclass.Next, tax deductions are not
welfare for the rich. Welfare is money given by the government. If I pay $10
less in taxes because of a tax break I did not get welfare, I kept more of my
money. The government does not own my money.I wish Mary had the
intellectual honesty to explain what she means by the gap between the poor and
the rich. The fact is that we are all different. Some people will climb the
mountain faster than others. Do we slow down the more athletic so that we can
all cross the finish line together? Who wants trickle up poverty due to
There is a retail tool that has been used for decades. Inflate the suggested
retail price of something, offer a big discount off that inflated price, and
thus convince the customer that they "saved" a bunch of money. It is
common in all those infomercials on TV. Try to sell someone a $5 trinket for $20
(plus outrageous postage and handling charges) and tell them they are getting a
"$50 value" for only 20 bucks.The same thing is being
peddled by progressives with the tax code. Convince everyone that 70%+ of a rich
person's income is what the tax should be, offer discounts off that high
tax for specific behaviors (buying a house, saving a 401(k), donating to
charity, etc.), and then tell everyone how much all those wealthy people are on
the government dole because their effective tax rate is less than what it
"should be".Everyone knows Mitt Romney must be some kind of
tax cheat even though he paid millions in taxes and followed all the tax laws
because he somehow didn't pay enough.
BlueI think you are on to something. I also think they call it the
"Flat Tax".ECRWhat was it that Shakespear said.
Something about a rose by any other name is still a rose. OK, call it whatever
you want. An economic system by any other name........
The tax deduction for mortgage interest is an effort to stimulate the housing
sector of our economy, which has historically been a significant contributor to
our local and national Gross Domestic Production or Product. If you think about
all the labor and material that goes into the average home, like copper wire,
piping, carpet, paint, lumber, brick, roof shingles, appliances, furnaces, etc.,
there are thousands of people who are employed to help build that home. The
interest deduction for taxes has at least a 10 times multiplier effect on the
economy. To look at it as simply a government handout to the homeowner is very
shortsighted and evidence of a lack of understanding of basic economic
principals. Tax incentives and deductions can be used by our representatives in
government to stimulate targeted sectors of our economy to benefit all of us,
not just the recipients of the tax deduction. To focus only on the recipients
and pit them against each other with labels of "rich" and "poor"
is class warfare and persecution and ignores the multiplying benefit of the
deduction to the economy, which is its principal intent, not some unfair
distribution of wealth to the rich.
So with the richest 10% paying a large majority of the overall taxes, this is
still not enough, nor acceptable. Well, what is acceptable? Does
the Left want the rich to pay all of the taxes, receive no incentives to invest
and risk to create, while spending more on income redistribution to the poor?
Many of the poor are honest, hard working, and simply need time to
climb the ladder. My wife and I, when first married, could not afford a car.
We walked or rode bicycles to get around. We struggled for years living on
tight budgets. Obama has certainly made things tough with his economy, but we
are just now starting to have a little to invest and hope to have something for
retirement...someday.But there are others among the poor who are
doing drugs, not seeking work, and abusing the system.Its not as
simple as Mary Barker would like us to believe, nor the extreme Right. There
must be balance, discipline, and principle involved in creating, administering,
and maintaining a safety net. I don't feel we have that in the US. Our
welfare system is very poorly administered.
All talk about tax rates is misleading unless we talk about EFFECTIVE tax rates.
Otherwise we are talking past each other, and comparing apples to oranges.As a conservative I see good points and common ground in this article.
Would it be possible for reasonable people from right and left to agree on cuts
in the tax rates paired with elimination of deductions? If we could just get
special interests out of the equation this seems like a no-brainer.
Can we please stop calling it a government "handout" when it
benevolently decides to let you keep more of your own stuff? I guess the guy
who breaks into your home gives you a "handout" when he can't carry
away your TV. Basically the author is sad that the government is not taking
away more of my income to give to someone who isn't working. If you really
want to fix the imbalance, then give the poor federal income tax breaks too (if
they were paying any taxes, that is).
@Kent DeForest,When was the last time you saw a liberal-run municipality
result in anything but bankrupt? Detroit? Stockton, CA? San Bernardino? Chicago?
Well, Chicago is not there yet but that's where thiey're headed. Far
from "supply-side nonsense," those cities refused to educate themselves
on the impact of non-supply-side lunacy.Corporations were originally
chartered to serve public interests? Which socialist history teacher did you
have? If you have a reference for that claim, I would certainly like to see it.
While I agree with most of the authors larger points I believe she is
overreaching in some ways. For example, while I agree that the mortgage interest
deduction simply inflates home prices for the real estate industry and should go
away, she says that this tax break for the middle-class and wealthy is paid for
by taxpayers that can't afford a home. That's not true - those
lower-income families aren't paying income taxes. She also says that,
including payroll taxes, the top earners and bottom earners' real tax rates
are close. That's true due to capital gains rates being the majority of the
top earners taxes (which I think should go away), but she fails to point out
that the liberal war on wealth (that raised the top income tax rate just a few
years ago) has caused higher taxes on the middle class, and particularly the
upper middle class who own small businesses. They are paying the highest rates
of all! Our system doesn't attack the poor. It's not the rich robbing
the poor, it's the politicians robbing the middle class to pay off the rich
and the poor.
Kent. With all due respect, I disagree with you about the causes of poverty as I
state above. I say that because I am experienced in witnessing poverty causes. I
will agree that good paying jobs are needed but the vast majority of jobs are
created by the private sector (corporations and companies). If we continue to
punish, over tax and over regulate the private sector, I promise you we will see
less jobs and more "Made in China" on the labels of everything we need!
There is a very conservative economic idea that has built this country and made
it the economic wonder of the world, at least it used to be until liberals
decided income redistribution was better! The incentive to innovate, take
economic risks, produce and succeed is the reasonable chance of profitability.
Take away that incentive and nothing gets invented, produced and poverty takes
its place! Detroit is a good example!
Mary Barker, The Real Maverick, SCR, et al, all start from the premise that
government creates wealth and "distributes" it through tax breaks.
Wrong! Taxes are monies that have been taken from somebody who actually created
economic activity. In addition, corporations don't pay taxes; their
customers pay those taxes through higher prices. Why is that so hard to
understand. Corporate welfare? You might as well say customer welfare because
allowing a corporation to keep more of their profits permits them to be more
successful in this ever-increasingly global competition. Individuals
create wealth by making sacrifices, taking risks, working hard, working long,
never giving up, oh, and a few are crooks or just highly talented, but most are
just hard workers. The parallel to "Hunger Games" is
interesting because it seems to me if we could just allow our children to go to
school anywhere we as parents chose, they would be just as successful as those
communities that raised their children to be "prepared" for the
"games." These same people who clamor for more for the poor are the last
in line to allow school choice. Quite a paradox, wouldn'tyou say?
Better wages would help. In the early 1960s, Cesar Chavez successfully prodded
then President John Kennedy to curb the “Bracero” guest-worker
program, which allowed farms to hire low cost Mexican immigrants instead of
American farmworkers. The program was killed by Congress in 1963.The
loss of foreign workers forced farms and food companies to triple the wages paid
to American field workers. The wages rose from $1.77 per hour in 1965, to $5.63
in 1978. That’s equivalent to $20.27 per hour in 2014, according to the
Bureau of Labor Statistics. Since then, farmworkers’ wages has fallen
after inflation, amid a huge wage of legal and illegal immigration.To counter this, legal immigration was doubled, and our borders became porous.
Letting business set our immigration policies has caused much of the problem
with surplus labor. It's not a one fix solution, but better immigration
management is needed.
Thid,Please remember that corporations are chartered by government,
by the people, and originally in America they were chartered to serve public
interests, not just to generate private wealth. It's easy and simplistic to
tell people to get an education, get a job, stop taking drugs, etc. But when
there are not enough decent jobs in this country to provide all these people
with sufficient income to pull them out of poverty, we must recognize that
poverty is a systemic problem, and the system conservatives have concocted over
the past 30 years (through supply-side nonsense) can never solve our societal
problems. We need to wake up and understand things at a deeper, more systemic
level. All the Republican bromides we've been hearing over the past decade
are an embarrassment to the great conservative thinkers of the past (prior to
Reagan's hijacking of the movement). I can't remember the last time I
saw a conservative economic idea that actually held water.
@ Ordinaryfolks. If you don't like corporations, don't do business
with them, no one is forcing you! That's right, teach them "evil"
corporations a lesson! Produce all your own food, clothing, medicines, energy
and everything else you need to stay alive! Corporations only exist if they can
invent and produce goods and services for a competitive price that people CHOOSE
to purchase to improve their lives. Your term "corporate welfare" is
bogus because America has THE highest corporate taxes in the world, period, and
heaven help them if they make a profit with which they can hire more people,
invent new products and make life better for millions of people! You are biting
the hand that feeds, clothes you and keeps you alive! How silly is that?
FT "Had America elected John McCain instead of BO the debt would have still
balloned"Exactly correct. If one looks at Obamas first year,
the debt climbed the most. And that was based on a budget set prior to his
election.Look at even the Heritage Foundation website (google
heritage foundation mandatory spending) for confirmation. The debt increase
under Obama is primarily based on two things.Revenues are down per
the great recessionMandatory spending is up, primarily because of the
great recession.These two things would have occurred under whoever
was president.SS, Medicare and Defense. These are the drivers. I
have not seen the GOP propose cuts to Medicare or SS but they have advocated for
an increase in Defense spending.We can either look at the real
issues, or bury our head in the sand and play partisan politics.
Like many liberals, Mary Barker wants to define any tax breaks given to wealthy
individuals as public welfare. It doesn't matter if you pay $10 million in
taxes, if you got a $1000 home mortgage deduction then you are some kind of
welfare queen!Those who are on "welfare" are those who
contribute less to the government than they receive in benefits. Those who pay
way more than their share are not on welfare even if they were able to deduct a
few things from their taxes, collect some unemployment, or claim their children
as dependents.Liberals want to define you as a welfare recipient if
they think you should have paid a ton of taxes and you just paid slightly less
than a ton. I guess for some people, if you give anything less than 100% of your
income to the government, you must be on welfare (if you are rich).
Hey Thid BakerHow many trillions have been transferred to the
already wealthy and to corporate America? If you are going to talk about sloth
and greed, you should mention these folks as well.Or is your
righteous indignation only used to insult poor folks?
Had America elected John McCain instead of BO the debt would have still balloned
and one can argue probably had been worse. Revenue and debts are a result of
things that have happened prior to (tax laws, economic reform, etc.). It seems
conservatives are furious that the policies BO initiated pulled us back from a
forecasted depression and reversed the debt course that the GOP and Bush put our
Mary Barker's article seems to assume that everyone's salary belongs
to the government, and when the government allows people to keep more of their
earnings by giving them tax breaks; it is the same as giving them government
handouts. Giving tax breaks to people to encourage them to engage in desirable
behavior such as buying a house or saving for retirement is not giving them
handouts. It is very important for people to save for their own
retirement. Social Security is in deep trouble, and will not be able to support
all the people who will be soon retiring.Owning a home is good for a
family, and should be encouraged. I wonder why Ms. Barker thinks that the
mortgage interest deduction is causing people to buy luxurious homes rather than
ordinary homes. I doubt this is the case. Of course some people will always
spend more than they should, but people should be allowed to make their own
decisions.Of course poor people need help, but not permanent
welfare. I've known several families who live on welfare and don't
have any desire to work; it is a very sad situation - especially for their
I am still amazed that so many think the solution is to just elect the farthest
right of the right.Like Louis Gohmert.SiriusXM’s
“The Wilkow Majority,” Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) argued, “if
you’re Commander-in-Chief you can’t be listening to Muslim brother
advise on when it’s time to stop destroying Muslim brothers.” Or Michell Bachman - Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) to demand
that the Inspectors General of four government agencies investigate “deep
penetration” by the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.S. government. The GOP has some good ideas and ideology. We need balance. Unfortunately,
they celebrate those who cloud logic and reason. You cant elevate people like
this and expect reasonable Americans to want you to lead the nation.
Blue & Paul Timothy Gibbs (2nd Paragraph) have knocked it out of the park.
@ Paul Timothy Gibbs Taylorsville, UTThanks for
trying to hint that the LDS population doesn't follow the Saviour by
following your ideology.I disagree that the Saviours idea to help
the poor, is to plunder the rich and hand it out to the poor. If that was the
way, why didn't he do it when he was here? Instead he visited the poor, he
blessed them, he taught them correct principles, he taught them a higher law. He
also visited the rich, the powerful, the lawyer, the ruler etc. After all His
teachings were for everyone.I would like to know what do you do to
help the poor? Do you volunteer? Donate? Do you help kids at school to learn to
read and write?The idea of using government to strip someone of
their wealth, and think that they will equitably redistribute it is ridiculous.
They tried with Social Security and that is a failure. They tried with obamacare
and that's a failure. They tried with tax breaks and that's a failure.
Do you really think it's going to work this time? The issue lies within
each individual. What are you going todo tohelp?
The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's
money to spend.The basic premises of this article are incredibly
flawed, unless you are a socialist or communist.109 million
Americans are drawing means tested welfare benefits from the government, and
that number is increasing. 103 million Americans hold actual paying jobs, and
that number is decreasing. How much longer can we rob the rich and give to the
poor? Why shoudl anyone bother working if their is no benefit to their hard
work?Contrary to the article, if Susan earns $1 million this year
from wages or interest, she will end up with about half of that amount after
taxes.If Sam earns $500 this year from pitiful wages from miserly
companies, he wile end up with many times that amount after earned income tax
credits paid back, welfare cash, food stamps, public housing etc. How is this
unfair to Sam but a sweet deal for Susan?When liberals take a vow of
poverty and give all of their earnings to the poor instead of coveting the
earnings of the dwindling number of working Americans I will take their
recommendations seriously, but not until then.
Congratulations to happy2bhere as the first to raise the inevitable banner of
Communism or Socialism. Are they the only alternatives to capitalism? And for
happy and Thid BArker, get out of the house and see more of the world than the
neighborhood you live in. Poverty is a complex issue that can't be defined
by a few simple solutions (get a job, stay off drugs, etc. etc. etc.) And finally, as the essay by Ms. Barker points out, the poor are NOT the major
recipients of "welfare" in our country. We've just chosen to
accept other names for it - subsidies, mortgage deductions etc, etc, etc.
HONESTY! That's all that's being asked for in this essay and failing
that, we have no way to solve the issue.
Never forget that the United States was built on the foundation of slavery.
Slavery literally built the foundation of American capitalism. Our class system
is a modification of the slave system. In looking to the future we have to
figure out some new ways to do things. Perhaps small "s" socialism,
like with cooperatives, can be a way.Regardless if what type of
socialism we head for, socialism of some brand is on the way. Our present
system is starkly unfair and unsustainable.
The ultra wealthy may get away with stuff but small business owners and the
middle class who are successful get hammered. Deductions mean I might pay a few
dollars less in taxes but my tax burden is still far larger. 47% of people pay
no net tax. At the same time, deductions for successful small business are
being stripped away. Quit victimizing our great country.Study hard,
delay gratification, save money, study smart, and you can succeed in America.
Dump internet, cable, cell phone unless you are making enough to save. Stay
away from drugs and alcohol, don't have sex before marriage and for sure
don't have kids out of wedlock. Go to bed early and work hard no matter
how bad your job is now. Read good books and spend less time watching tv, video
games, etc. That is the solution, not more handouts.
It is ironic that demograficaly those that voted for Obama (twice) have found
their wages lower and unemployment higher. While the rich have gotten richer.
Yet, I am sure they will continue to vote for more of the same. Speaks volumes.
She missed my favorite. Probably because it doesn't exactly fit her
premise. But why on earth does the child tax credit make sense? I've got
six kids, a large family. Why do my bachelor neighbors have to pay extra for
me? It's just Republican redistribution and makes as much sense as it does
for me to pay for my other neighbor who's on welfare to play video games
all day (Democratic redistribution). Both parties play the system
to get the votes they want/need by dangling these carrots out at us and when we
vote with our pocketbooks we are failing ourselves ultimately.
Flat Tax or National Sales Tax. Take your pick. Get taxed on what you spend
not what you earn.Don't like that - we then try this - cut the
Government down - a lot. Still don't like it? Well then just
wait a little longer because things cannot stay this way forever. Economic revolutions come because the systems get over burdened. We should have switched to the metric system back in the 70's and the
flat or sales tax in the 90's when we had the chance.
"What does this author propose to do to solve the problem?"1) Overturn Citizens United. Corporations are _not_ people, and money is _not_
speech.2) Campaign finance reform. Require complete transparency for
_all_ contributions to political campaigns.3) Tax reform. Level the
playing field. Eliminate specialized tax deductions and loopholes that exist
solely to benefit the people who hired the lobbyists to write the tax laws and
then buy the legislators to pass them.4) End corporate welfare. It
makes no sense that for-profit corporations receive billions of dollars in
public assistance and then employ armies of lawyers and accountants to make sure
they pay little or no taxes.That's a start.
Develop some meaningful job skills, stay off drugs and alcohol, don't have
children out of wedlock, go to work everyday (even two jobs if necessary) and
don't spend more than your income! Poverty problem solved! It works every
time! These are the reason millions of Americans are not poor and those who
don't do these things usually are poor!
So much is wrong in the logic, reasoning, and analysis in this piece. However,
it would take much more than 200 words to sort it out. Bottom line is this. In
a capitalistic economy, it is necessary for there to be rich, middle, and poor.
Americas poor are much richer than the poor of most any other country. And that
is because the rich are much richer than the rich of other countries. And as a
result we have a huge bell curved middle class that in and of itself has three
degrees, upper middle, middle middle, and lower middle. Our system has worked
pretty well for most people. Want to trade it for socialism? Communism? That
kind of system would only bring everyone down, except for the elite wealthy.
Why is it that liberals seem to believe that social justice is achieved not by
bringing people up to their potential, but by lowering others down who have
succeeded in our system?
I agree with Liberal Ted - he needs to pay more taxes.
As stated here by a few, I believe in charity. But forced charity, no matter
how you look at it is communism, and that is not what the Savior taught.
Any rational, intelligent person would know by now that the government's
transfer of more than $20 trillion to solve poverty has not worked! So what do
liberals want to do? Transfer more money and create more dependency which means
more poverty! The solution to poverty will NEVER come from government welfare
programs that punishes success and rewards and enables idleness, poor personal
choices and addictions! Develop some job skills, stay off drugs and booze, work
hard and don't have kids out of wedlock! Those are the real solutions to
Outstanding article. Mary Barker is a treasure. Let's actually help people
who need it. AAnd while we're at it, let's be done with the myth
of welfare dependency. It's not actually a problem.
I don't know when, but one day the majority of Americans will wake up and
discover the inequities that have been built into our tax and governmental aid
systems are engineered to help the already comfortable.The cries of
woe and worry from the Tea Party Republicans aside, the free market system in
theory benefits no one in particular and burdens everyone in general. However,
when our politicians (both left and right) put into place policies that
excessively burden one group over another, we have altered the math of free
market capitalism. The winners in this goody game are the corporations (tax
breaks) and the wealthy (enough said, they don't usually end up at a food
bank). The losers in this redistributionist game are the already poor and
struggling. Follow the real money. It is so easy to distort the
argument that the poor couple down the road get a couple of hundred bucks a
month to assist them in their life's struggle for decency. The billions
accrue to corporate America and the mega wealthy. Tea Party distractions are a
OK, the rich are evil and need to be brought down, I get it. What does this
author propose to do to solve the problem?
Our society is stacked against the poor, and we do our best to marginalize and
avoid helping them, even creating the absurd notion of "class warfare"
against the rich to someone claim they are the ones who are victimized.It breaks my heart to see how common this mean-spirited attack on the poor is
in Utah, where so many of us belong to a religion that teaches us to love and
care for our fellow children of God. We need to stop being so considered about
following conservative ideology and more concerened about following the
teachings of the Savior. They are decidely not one and the same.
Thank you, Ms. Barker, for succinctly outlining the fallacies so often trumpeted
in our daily dose of political polemics vilifying the poor people of the
nation. It will only be when we honestly discuss the facts, as you have done
here, that we can find a common ground that will benefit the nation as a whole,
rather than enrich a chosen few who don't really need the help.This year's federal deficit is expected to be $583.0B, the lowest amount
in the Obama years, and yet there is so much more that could be done, but
cutting welfare benefits for the poorest people in the country is not the
answer. Whether it is a reduction in the spending for new weapons of war or the
tax subsidies for private companies already making incredible profits there is
room to cut."But cutting those expenditures would cause jobs
losses in the private sector!" you say. Yes they will, and so let's
admit that government spending impacts the well being of much of the private
sector. But our war on poverty should not be a war on poor people.
People like to use the word "diversity", it's one of the key
buzzwords especially among liberals and democrats. Yet their myopic vision for
the nation is "green energy". It's the perfect utopian dream.
Endless power supply, limited emissions and pollution. But, that can only create
so many jobs. During the past 6 years, more jobs have fled this nation and went
overseas. Jobs that at one time, an employee could be trained on site. Overtime
gain a pension, middle class wages, health care and provide for his/her family.
We no longer manufacture as we once did. We have entire cities that are
crumbling and wasting away.What is the solution? Another $2 Trillion
of debt stimulus? Advance degrees for everyone?Maybe we need to look
at why companies don't want to do business here. Wages are down when supply
of labor is up, maybe we look at immigration. Our national debt drives down the
value of the dollar and increases our interest rates. Maybe balancing the budget
and paying off the debt is needed (it's a spending problem and not a
revenue problemiethis year record tax revenue
We don't need more welfare. We need jobs. Something our current regime has
claimed he's fixing, but, instead has run our national debt up $9 Trillion
and made the rich richer and poor poorer. Great job baroke.Giving
handouts to the bottom quintile, doesn't help them move up. The assumption
is, you give them their "magic juice" and they use the resource wisely
to get ahead. In reality, most of these people at the bottom become dependent on
the welfare. You try and wean them off and it's devastating to them. We
just exacerbate the problem. They live off of the system, have children and
teach them this is the way to do it.The real question is how do you
raise someone up, without making them dependent on you? Will bad mouthing rich
people solve the problem? Historically, I am going to say no. Generation after
generation of class warfare, stealing from the wealthy/stealing from the poor
indicates that has never solved the problem. Obama thinks if everyone has a
degree then the problem is solved. He fails to consider the supply side of
economics. Too much supply and low demand, decreases wages.
Excellent article! Bravo!What we have today indeed is Robin Hood, in
reverse. Yet, the right seems perfectly fine with it. They callhandouts to
the rich and big businesses, incentives. They call handouts to everyone else,
welfare/handouts. This has led to our economic ruin. They are the result of of
decades of a failed economic policy promoted by an actor.Yet, the righties
refuse to recognize it's failure.This stuff happens here in
Utah. Just look at the prison. Developers don't want to pay for the prison
relocation. So they're going to force the public to pay for it while they
reap it's rewards. Socialize the costs, privatize the profits.