Republicans vote against their own self interests?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by w1z4rd, Sep 14, 2010.

  1. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    No, not my argument. My argument for progressive income taxes is mainly that some means of wealth redistribution is necessary to compensate for fact that those with more money to invest get more to invest next year,etc. Do a simple math model and don't for get that both rich and poor need to eat.

    As I remember the last time I posted such a model in detail I took X dollars from poor and 5 X from the rich's incomes for the "essentials of their life" and assumed the poor had income of I and the rich of 100I. Realistically X is nearly equal to I say X = 0.8I. Then the rich have available to invest (100I -5X) = 96 I and the poor only can invest 0.2I thus the rich of this model gain 480 times more in interest earning annually than the poor.

    POINT is that with any half way reasonable model, the rich get richer much faster than the poor do so unless there is some means of weathy re-distribution society will go unstable as in the French revolution as all the wealth of the society will become concentrated in the hands of the few - This result is a simple fact of compounding interest. (Commonly expressed as: "It takes money to make money.")

    Thus I favor progressive income tax rate and inheritance taxes.

    SUMMARY: Some such means of wealth redistribution is not a social choice but a mathematical necessity for society to be stable.

    Note there is not a word here about infrastructure and who pays for it, but if only the wealthy do and all benefit, that is another means of achieving part of the necessary re-distribution of wealth.

    Also note that, in part because of GWB's tax relief for the wealthy (1.1 trillion taken from the treasury or not collected thus far by the top 2%) currently THERE IS VERY INADEQUATE REDISTRIBUTION of wealth. I.e. the gap between the rich and even the middle class is rapidly widening - I.e. the wealth of the US is becoming concentrated. - The US is getting an income structure more typical of South American countries.

    Ironically in Brazil that gap is rapidly closing by a redistribution of wealth program called "Balsa Familia" that pays the poor to keep their children in school until age 18. (Previously they were sent to work in the fields with only a few years of schooling.)

    No. For that to be true, at least in my case, I would need to have advanced some argument as to who should pay more for infrastructure, but I have not.

    Do you want to try to disprove the mathematical necessity of wealth re-distribution?
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2010
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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Which people would that be?

    I am not at all shocked that the faction involved directly, here, finds insult and condescension in simple description of physical, impersonal reality by others,

    while oblivious to actual insult, and self righteous in personal attack, from themselves.

    But only because the phenomenon of such entitlement is so familiar. It is, in its way, alarming, even shocking. One should be more disturbed by it, no?

    That is false.

    People who hold views like mine are typically well educated, or long experienced. People who hold views like yours typically think Ayn Rand was some kind of visionary or at least a competent intellectual, and have no apparent familiarity with the concept of "cost" as it relates to natural resources, the use of public infrastructure, or the maintenance of the public welfare.
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2010
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  5. smokinglizard Registered Senior Member

    The burden of proof is one making the claim. No offense, but the model you presented proved nothing other than advance the notion that wealthy people have greater means to accumulate (and/or generate) more wealth than poor people do.

    You then leapt to the conclusion that that would create an unstable society akin to France leading up to the French Revolution. You provided absolutely no evidence or solid rationale as to why that would happen. I did study the French Revolution and recall that its origins were multifaceted.
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  7. smokinglizard Registered Senior Member

    No, it isn't, and that can be shown by reading in between the lines of your next paragraph.

  8. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    Take your pick. I classed such as "standard human behavior," did I not?

    Right, because "dumb and ignorant" is simply a vanilla description of "physical, impersonal reality." No value judgements or personal aspersions there.

    If you're really disturbed by it, then stop doing things that reliably reinforce it.

    Yeah, no arrogance on display here either. It's a complete mystery what complainants even think they're referring to!
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2010
  9. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    and I outlined it in last post and in earlier posts carried demonstration (a numerical example) thru three years as I recall.

    It is a simple mathematical fact, which you partially acknowledge, that without some means of re-distribution, 99% OF ALL THE WEALTH IN THE SOCIETY will be controlled by less than one percent of the population. How many generations this takes depends upon that rate of return is assumed and the initial distribution of wealth assumed.

    There is no society that lasts for many generations that does not practice some form of redistribution. Sure there were many factors in the French revolution but the main one was that wealth had become so concentrated that a significant fraction of the population could not buy bread, etc. Starving people will charge soldiers with guns and did on Bastille Day.

    If too many Americans cannot feed their families, because wealth is too concentrated, the main difference is that many of them will have guns.

    The burden of proof is on you to find a flaw in my mathematic proof that wealth always becomes more concentrated if there is no form of redistribution. Until you can, my point is proven.
  10. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member


    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    "Boo, hoo hoo, the mean poors want to oppressively tax me! Whatever will I do? I'm already running dangerously low on shoes!"
  11. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

  12. nirakar ( i ^ i ) Registered Senior Member

    False. The military protects neither the rich nor the poor. The rich should be more angry at military spending than anybody because they pay for more of it.

    The military is primarily an ego toy. TED TURNER said "Life is a game and money is how we keep score". Nations are also a game and military power is how we keep score. Some of us enjoy the game more than others.

    Secondarily the military is for corporate welfare. Defense contractors need a big military to get big military contracts. Military power combined with global political intrigue used to get transnational mining, oil and agricultural corporations natural resources at cut rate prices but that game does not work so well anymore.

    Stopping the Nazis and Soviets was good, but the US built a larger force than it needed to stop the Soviets. Now the US has a military about 3 times larger than it should be and having and using this military is just creating more enemies for the USA and is thereby decreasing security for Americans.
  13. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    The problem with your model is that it assumes that "rich" and "poor" are immutable characteristics and that investment is the only means to acquire wealth. Neither assumption is true.

    Your wealth is not only a function of investment, but of your ability to earn money. And your ability to earn money is directly proportional to the effort you put into it.

    Rather than focusing on redistributing wealth, we should focus on ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to succeed thru things like improving horrible inner city schools
  14. smokinglizard Registered Senior Member

    Again, you have not proven anything. No footstomping or fist clenching will change that. You presented some algebraic puffery and then -- again -- leapt to the conclusion that rich people getting richer necessarily leads to the breakdown of society.

    Do you not see how you did not prove your assertion? The text in red, specifically, is what you did not prove.
  15. smokinglizard Registered Senior Member

    Amen, brother, amen.
  16. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

  17. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

  18. countezero Registered Senior Member

    Your arrogance knows no bounds.
  19. nirakar ( i ^ i ) Registered Senior Member

    When you are smart and lucky money is very useful for making more money.

    When you earn enough to make saving easy and when the financial economy also is rewarding saving and passive investment (like owning stocks) with good returns then off course the rich become richer while the poor remain poorer. Essentially it is compound income. We all understand the power of compounded interest, so why is it so hard to understand that not saving and investing will keep somebody poor (unless they earn a high income)?

    How much money you have alone affects your ability to "buy low" and "sell high". One of the reasons people "sell low" is cash flow problems.

    A difference between seeing an opportunity and seizing an opportunity is often financial resources.

    Once you have family responsibilities taking time off from your low wage jobs to go to college is quite difficult.

    But if the goal is to spread your DNA rather than to become rich the some young couple starting to have babies at age 14 until fertility ends and working 2+ dead end low paying jobs so that their children can also have children at age 14 ends up being the winning strategy. If spreading DNA is the goal then the only usefulness of being rich is to get your family through a famine alive or so that all the males in the family can have multiple wives.

    In theories as to why it will be OK to have 30 billion people on this earth they proponents of population growth is good put forward that more people equals more scientists on more business competitors and there for a faster pace of solutions to all problems including the challenges of high population. But this is only true if the increased population of children are capable of growing up to be scientists. The children's education (including what parents do with toddlers) and nutrition need to be good and the the parents should not be overly stressed out and the neighborhood should not be a crime ridden hell hole and their needs to be clen drinking water if the children with potential to become the needed scientists and engineers are to actually become scientists and engineers.

    Publicly funded education was perhaps the American innovation most important to America's rise to the top. Cheap land was also important.

    Having a little more money makes the poor happier than having a little more money makes the rich therefore when measuring success in terms of happiness a policy that favors the poor over the rich is superior to a policy tha favors the rich over the poor.

    Mostly the poor are poor because they are lazy and or stupid and or impulsive and or unlucky and or their families were messed up and the rich are rich because they were less lazy and or stupid and or impulsive and or unlucky and or their families were less messed up.

    The rich whine and complain when they are hurt economically and they sound intelligent while whining. The poor usually don't sound so intelligent while whining, they just sound pathetic and desperate. The poor do have an intelligent case to make that the government policies are screwing and taking money out of their pockets and giving it to wealthier people but the poor don't even know how strong their case is. I don't think Adam Smith and David Ricardo ever imagined a situation where a nation would over a prolonged period pay for a significant part of what they consumed by going increasingly into debt. This policy of going into debt that America has unwittingly embraced transfers wealth from those who compete with third world labor to those who do not compete with third world labor.

    In the high housing priced metro areas a government created scarcity of zoning for housing transfers vast quantities of wealth from the young and the poor and the new arrivals to the old owners of zoned land and their heirs.

    In car insurance the insured driving inexpensive cars are forced to subsidize the insured driving expensive cars.

    Sales tax is regressive. The wealthy complain of the double taxation of capital gains taxes and Inheritance taxes and corporate taxes but then people who spend are also double taxed in comparison to people who save.

    The wealthy tend to be smarter than the poor but this does not mean that the cliches popular among the older and wealthier are intelligent and true. In some recent thread (maybe this one) we discussed the falseness of the cliche that says that "giving the wealthy more of their own money to spend through tax cuts creates jobs more than tax cuts for the middle class does". That cliche is easily proved wrong yet it is still a popular cliche that you might here several times a day on CNBC. The reason the cliche is so popular with people financially sophisticated enough to no that it is wrong is because if your financially sophisticated enough to know that the cliche is wrong then you probably are wealthy enough to want to feel good about being wealthy. Mexican illegal immigrants and their employers both insist they are not hurting anybody else's income by the employment of illegal immigrants. Besides being wrong, what this belief of illegal immigrants and their employers has in common with the belief that "tax cuts for the wealthy is good for creating jobs" is that both beliefs make the believers feel better about keeping money that somebody else thinks they should not be getting to keep.

    Poorer people like to repeat the cliches of the wealthy because doing so makes them sound smarter and more successful and poorer people like to dress like the wealthy because that makes them look smarter and more successful. In general people don't know what they are doing or why they are saying what they say. Nature demands that you follow successful instincts but nature does not demand that you understand what you are doing.

    Smart people lie to themselves as often as stupid people lie to themselves. Smart people's lies may be more intelligent lies but they are still lies. A lot human time is spent bullshiting others. We need to look successful to be given the opportunities that are only entrusted to people who look like they might succeed.

    Lying to ourselves is so common. Just listen to any husband and wife fight. One or both of them has lied to themselves. Religion proves we collectively choose to believe lies.

    My point is that SmokingLizard's implication that what the wealthy tend to believe is likely to be true is not correct. Yes the wealthy are on average to some degree smarter and more experienced than the non-wealthy but what the wealthy believe is also influenced by what they want to believe and what they hear all the time.

    Interesting that while Red State wealthy overwhelmingly believe Republican thoughts, half of the Blue state wealthy do not believe Republican thoughts.

    My other point was that yes the rich do tend to get richer while the poor stay poor. A poor person must be exceptional or very lucky to become rich while a rich person must be foolish or quite unlucky to become poor. The rules of the game determines whether the gap between rich and poor widens or decreases. I think more mobility between rich and poor is better than less mobility between rich and poor. I want it to be easy for every child to reach their potential even if that means that the wealthy must be made less wealthy to pay for that.
  20. shichimenshyo Caught in the machine Registered Senior Member

  21. Repo Man Valued Senior Member

    It's becoming increasingly popular in some circles to condemn FDR and The New Deal as having gone too far, and even been socialist in nature. Leaving aside whether or not that is true, the passage of time seems to have made some forget that armed uprisings, and possibly a full on revolution, were distinct possibilities in 1930's America. But I suppose it's difficult to give credit for something that didn't happen.
  22. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    Yes unfortunately it is far to fashionable in some circles to call anyone who disagrees with the them names like socialist, marxist, liberal, etc.
  23. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    I suspect you don't know what my views are, to say that.

    But you can check your own: Try out your economic views on a selection of people over 60 years old, with family connections to WWII or even the Great Depression - especially those with good educations. Ask them what they think of deregulated banking and untaxed accumulation of wealth by the heirs of the superrich. Or maybe just peruse the voting patterns in states with high lifelong resident lifespans.
    The well educated are not typically young, or inexperienced, or poor.
    I'll bet you don't. But I can help, with the unspoken and missing questions your presumptions replace: Someone who thinks the public welfare, common good, etc, not only exists but is necessary for the common opportunity of moneymaking you idolize (and can be destroyed, lost, thrown away, etc, for the benefit of the few) - an entire category of benefit notably absent from your attempts at analysis.

    With Billy taking the technical or pragmatic side, I have confined my comments to the ethical aspects: What I expect, since gratitude and appreciation is naturally unrealistic, is that the rich be required to pay for the society that made their moneymaking (or more likely, money inheriting) possible and their ownership of great wealth comfortable and safe and enjoyable. This society was provided to them, in decent shape and working order, by others, and those others expected them to maintain it in their turn - rather than just rip it off for maximum short term accumulation. The question of how much they should pay, ethically, is then answered: whatever it takes.
    When used to describe depersonalized actions, policies, assertions made in the larger realm of media discourse, Republican Party propaganda for example, etc,

    as I did and do,

    that is the case.

    If someone insists on taking it personally, what is the benefit of denying them the opportunity? We've had thirty years of experience publicly treating ludicrous bullshit as respectable opinion, merely because an organized propaganda effort has used its world class marketing skills and enormous influence on the corporate media to sell it to the gullible. The result has been disaster, repeatedly. A similar pattern, lower key, is visible here. By no coincidence, the most reliable and informative major media sources of information we had left a couple of years ago were comedy shows - the only venue willing to ridicule, willing to call bullshit to its face.
    And we see the effects on comprehension and/or integrity of your recently adopted approach.

    To whit: I specifically denied being disturbed by it, that denial a key component of the post in question. The "if" clause of your response is, then, an incomprehension and/or a tactic. And that kind of response is typical of your recent deflections, irrelevant personal attacks, and inappropriate, rude, hostile, and frankly mistaken behavior on this forum. It interferes with discussion, and damages threads just like this one. Note that as you invent and choose sides here, you seem unable to avoid adopting the tactics of your adopted team. Is this a path you have chosen with open eyes, or do you think you are immune to the effects of that kind of posting?

    Did I claim any such virtue?

    As long as I stay a couple of levels above the one you're sinking to, I figure I'm OK - and that's no problem at all.
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2010

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