Tax Questions for Liberals and other Non-conservatives

Discussion in 'Politics' started by synthesizer-patel, Apr 25, 2008.

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What do you think of taxation

Poll closed May 25, 2008.
  1. Raise taxes for everyone

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Raise taxes for the rich

    33.3%
  3. taxes are about right - the issue is how they are spent

    19.0%
  4. some other opinion - (please post to tell us)

    47.6%
  1. synthesizer-patel Sweep the leg Johnny! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,267
    Having read some comments on the Wesley Snipes thread that ran along the lines of "Liberals always want to raise taxes" and "liberals always want to tax the rich more" I thought it was about time we found out what liberals really think with a poll.

    As a financially independent and moderately comfortable person who is nominally a liberal in many senses - I think the taxes in my country are more or less right (and I pay more tax than an american of similar means I'm sure).
    My issue is how they are spent.

    Conservatives - feel free to contribute to this thread, but can I kindly ask you not to answer the poll and skew the results - that way you may find out what us liberals really think instead of just confirming what you think we think

    Cheers
     
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  3. Exhumed Self ******. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,373
    I voted for taxing the rich more, but perhaps everyone should be, I'm not sure. I am pretty sure it should begin with the rich, though.

    I think you're pretty much correct. The problem is spending... Particularly on our inflated military budget. And besides things like war and other unneeded spending is the fact that the government spends it inefficiently, besides just spending it in bad areas.

    On the whole, the government is not going to change it's spending habits anytime soon, whether Republicans or Democrats are in power. Which is why I want taxes raised. I would definitely prefer more carefully spent money on the government's part, but I don't expect that to happen. There are important things we need tax money on that can't be left waiting, IMO.
     
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  5. Challenger78 Valued Senior Member

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    7,536
    The better off take care of the less of. Isn't that what compassion is based apon ?
     
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  7. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    25,817
    How is it fair that the rich, who work and save their money to get rich, have to pay more taxes than the guy who quit school and works at McDonalds? Why punish the rich for working hard?
     
  8. Exhumed Self ******. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,373
    So rich people are harder workers, and non-rich people quit school and work at McDonalds?

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  9. kazakhan Registered Abuser Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    915
    I chose "other". I think taxing a persons labour is wrong i'd support taxing goods and services, capital gains, investment income etc all at the same rate.
     
  10. clusteringflux Version 1. OH! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,766
    I feel this description is more true in the USA where there is more entrepreneurship and less "old money" passed from generations before like in Britain. If you look at some of the richest folks in the USA, you'll find that most are self made.
     
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    30,994
    The people who benefit from a system should pay for it.

    Personally, I get very little benefit from most government services - such as international trade agreements, military presence world wide, etc - and I have to put up with the competition for land and other resources from the people who do.

    If people don't want to get rich, they don't have to - then they won't have to pay those high taxes either. Or they could become hedge fund managers, and be taxed at a lower rate on their hundreds of millions than I am on my thousands.

    btw: Last I looked, of the top ten richest people in the US five were heirs of Sam Walton. Are we supposed to believe they got rich by working hard and saving their money ? In my area, WalMart has led to a net loss of jobs, net loss of health care, and a net reduction in income for people in my income class.
    That is yesterday's news, if it was ever true. The US lags most Western industrial countries now, in class mobility, and the gap to be jumped is growing.

    Even back in the better times, I recall a survey that noted the most common correlative factor, best predictor, of someone's becoming a President, Vice-President, or CEO of a large US corporation, was marrying the daughter of someone already holding one of those jobs.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  12. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    12,738

    If you keep a-talkin this way,
    me and you is gonna havter wrassle.
     
  13. synthesizer-patel Sweep the leg Johnny! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,267
    I would agree with this if you could show me that say, a black woman brought up in a background of poverty with its associated problems (poor housing, healthcare, and education) had the same opportunities for betterment than a white male brought up in a relatively affluent middle class environment.

    I'm not saying she has NO opportunity - just that it is significantly reduced - and importantly her reduced opportunity is not likely to be correlated to her choices - moreso that lack of opportunity is correlated to lack of available choices.

    For example what if she has no choice but to go leave school and work at Mac Donalds due to having to help pay for medical bills for a sick parent or sibling - these are good conservative family values - however by not spending tax money on universal healthcare or a decent public education system and instead throw it away on "faith-based initiatives" and un-necessary military spending, you rob potentially talented people of opportunity regardless of the choices they make.

    If success was simply a matter of the choices we make, then fair enough - but I doubt that anyone would be quite so naive as to seriously propose that.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  14. Exhumed Self ******. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,373
    I don't. To me it seems as if, relatively, economic opportunity is shrinking as generations go by in Americans. And as that happens there is less opportunity for someone to go from poor to rich. So even if most people who are wealthy today were actually self made (which I don't think is actually mathematically possible with the increasing wealth gap), remember that they got rich in circumstances that are no longer available today. For one example, it is a lot harder to become a M.D. in America these days.

    I'm not sure quite what you mean by "old money". As in a Rockefeller? (that is what I tend to think of since reading Old Money by Nelson W. Aldrich /plug). I assume you meant anyone with parents who can provide for them though.

    It is becoming pretty daunting to be self made in the sense that you go from a poor family to being rich. For the majority, paying for college on their own is quite hard. It's going to take those people longer, at the least. And they were already at a disadvantage because they went to worse schools, and on the whole tend to have less academically oriented upbringings.
     
  15. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    25,817
    I've been poor. So poor that I could only afford to eat 1 meal a day. I worked my ass off to get where I am. I saw my neighbors sitting on their porches collect food stamps and other welfare benefits while I worked a 12 hr shift.

    My taxes paid for them to sit on that porch. I don't even wanna hear about no opportunities. The unemployment office offers all kinds of free classes. The gvmt will pay for child care. You can get student loans to go to school. There are opportunities if you get off your ass and find them.

    Anyone ever see The Pursuit of Happyness?
     
  16. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    53,966
    Maybe they worked hard, maybe not. In any case, they are benefitting to a far greater degree from the conditions our society has established. It's only fair that they give back to the community. There is also a political danger associated with great wealth.
     
  17. Cannon Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    207
    Move the decimal point over to the left one and tax Everyone at 10%, the poor can deal with it, they deal with being poor as is. The rich can deal with it, but there should be major implacations for being late, like a extra 5% taxation just because they have money.
     
  18. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    53,966
    That's lame. 10% of a poor person's income takes food out of their mouths. 10% of a rich person's income is a brake job on the Bentley.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008
  19. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    23,198
    I agree 100% with your well expressed post, but add (to keep it more related to taxes, government program finance etc.):

    The funding of pre-college education in US by the local government instead of nationally, is the main way the rich, who can afford to buy home where the schools are good, insure that their children, by and large, are the rich of the next generation even those of much lower natural intelligence than the average in the rat-infested under-funded urban schools.

    The kids going to these poor urban schools do learn the practical things most will need later in life: - How to keep a rat from biting a sleeping child; how to use under age kid to deliver drugs; to be sure to collect the money before doing the trick; etc.

    I favor federal taxes, not real-estate taxes paying for all teacher salaries. (And for their education if they sign up to teach for few years at the average starting salary of the school they agree to serve in.) The jobs available would be filled by an "inverse Dutch auction." I.e. if no one qualified is willing to teach in poor school "P" at salary $a then after about a week, the salary offered for teachers in school "P" is increased to $a+$1000, etc. When salary $b has several wanting the job, it goes to the teacher with the best standing on some national exam. Or some such plan which tends to send the best teacher to the school which need them the most. (And that too is determined by national exams of their students.)

    Also it would be wise to have teachers in elementary school stay with the students as they move up thru the grades, as is done in Norway (and others in Scandinavia, I think). That way little time is wasted each year for the teacher to learn who needs help with what, etc. but much more importantly it fixes responsibility on one teacher as she cannot just pass the problem kid on to the next grade teacher - she is the next grade teacher.

    The teacher gets a possibly-large financial reward if her group of students scores much higher on the 6 grade national exam than they did on the 1st grade exam they took 6 years earlier. If very large, (say > 50% of her annual salary) this reward could be partially added to her pension fund and is linearly proportional to the improvement her class made in those 6 years. My ex-wife was a good Norwegian elementary school teacher - received "thank you" Christmas cards for some students annually for 35 years. Many of her students are now highly successful - one has offered financial aid if she ever needs it as "She made him what he is today" - he states. In the US system no teacher is responsible for anything - just pass the kid along to be someone else’s problem for a year and there is no financial reward for doing very well by the students.

    I just mention this even though I know it is pointless. - The US is too arrogant to learn from others.

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    (Same reason US was sucked into Vietnam War even though the French, who could speak the language, of "French-Indo-China" had been defeated. etc. for many other examples of this arrogance as also is expressed in "the WORLD series" baseball title.)

    PS One of the reasons why US is going down the tubes economically is that having a large part of the students graduating high school qualified only to offer manual labor to the market place is no longer desirable in a world that is "post industrial" and wanting brain power. US is losing too many good brains to compete as they happen to be in black bodies or have had parents that could not afford to live where the good schools are. - I am not a "bleeding heart liberal" - I want to stem the US slide down for economic reasons.- Falling dollar buys on half as many Brazilian real as it did four or five years ago and that slide is accelerating. More related at Thread: "How Stupid can US voters Be?" Also all my grand children still live in the USA - I want them to have a future.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2008
  20. Cannon Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    207
    well, it is a flat tax, and no. that 10% is cable.
     
  21. Challenger78 Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,536
    People who have worked hard to become rich should know what it was like to start off. Therefore they should be more inclined to help, than those who are struggling.
     
  22. synthesizer-patel Sweep the leg Johnny! Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,267
    Congratulations - its good to see someone do well against the odds.

    I have to say though that you have a rather simplistic view for someone who claims to come from that sort of background.

    You can't - in all seriousness and with a straight face - try and tell us that you REALLY think that ALL people who are poor deserve to be poor because it's a simple result of thier own laziness and stupidity?

    You can't - in all seriousness and with a straight face - try and tell us that you REALLY think that everyone on social security lives so well off it that they have no motivation to better themselves?

    You can't - in all seriousness and with a straight face - try and tell us that you REALLY think that because a few people genuinely do abuse social security that we shouldn't pay it to ANYONE?

    if you can answer yes to any of these questions - please enlighten me as to why you think that your way would make the country a better place
     
  23. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    18,523
    Taxation is necessary, in many cases the alternatives are worse, someone needs to be paid to do things for the public, the things that aren't affectively done by a cooperation.
     

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