Tax Bill about to Pass (actually matters)

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by wankerness, Nov 30, 2017.

  1. Unleash The Fury

    Unleash The Fury SS.org Regular

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    I want them to do what they were originally supposed to do. I also want them to let banks and business fail instead of bailing them out.

    Also just remember, the federal income tax wasnt fully implemented until the 1900's; so they have operated for quite some time prior to the federal income tax
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2018
  2. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    No it wasn't. :lol: The first income tax occured during the Civil War, and while it took the 16th Amendment to settle the question of constitutionality of the method of levying the tax, income taxes were in use WELL before the 1900s. :lol:

    And, you're still telling me what you want governments to NOT do. What do you actually want them to do? What services should the government provide?
     
  3. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    I think he's referring to the personal federal income tax during peacetime, and by fully implemented, he means fully implemented without the courts knocking it down.

    Personal federal income taxes were passed in congress for the War of 1812, just to raise money for the war, but the war ended before the taxes could be collected, so it was a moot issue. Again, during the Civil War, but again, because of the circumstances between the people, the states, and the federal government, around the Civil War, the efficacy of the tax is questionable, and it went away at the end of the war. Congress tried again just before the turn from the 19th to the 20th Century, and the courts declared it unconstitutional, so Congress responded by amending the Constitution so that they could implement the tax without the courts nullifying the laws. State income taxes were another topic entirely, as was business tax, so the statement is fairly narrow, but, indeed, it is what most people mean when they say "the federal income tax wasn't fully implemented until the 1900's," which is factually correct when all of those little caveats are included.

    I'm kind of shocked that this would be considered a rational demand, as worded. It'd be like reading the ten commandments in the Bible: "thou shalt not this and thou shalt not that, oh, and also make sure you keep the Sabbath," and Moses said "I cannot accept those rules, because it wasn't descriptive enough about what I can do."

    Some people are democrats. It's easy enough for those people to enter a political discussion by saying, "Hi, I am a Democrat."
    Some people are republicans. It's easy enough for those people to enter a political discussion by saying, "Hi, I am a Republican."
    Some people might identify with one of these two parties, but disagree with a couple of things, but it's just easier to say one or the other.
    Then you have independents, who, evidently, are required to explain their entire detailed set of political beliefs before they can enter the discussion?! That's a little frustrating for me, as someone who disagrees equally with both parties and also sometimes agrees with one party with one issue yet with the other party on another issue.

    Personally, I see no problem in taking the stance of "I don't think the federal government should be allowed to _verb_." If that precipitates a counter argument of "well, we kind of need _verb_ in order to have _noun_," then that's a great way to have a discussion. :shrug:
     
  4. StevenC

    StevenC SS.org Regular

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    Entering a discussion about specific taxes by saying "there should be no taxes" and then repeating it endlessly isn't a great way to have a discussion either.
     
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  5. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Okay, so here's a compromise... if you are opposed to a federal income tax, how do you prescribe the federal government fund itself and *whatever* programs you think it should administer?

    Is that fair?
     
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  6. Unleash The Fury

    Unleash The Fury SS.org Regular

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  7. narad

    narad SS.org Regular

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    There goes the military.
     
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  8. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Okay, so, anarchist confirmed then. Moving on.
     
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  9. Unleash The Fury

    Unleash The Fury SS.org Regular

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    ^ Fwiw I believe the caption should instead read "Without federal income tax, how would things get paid for?".

    I do believe in some government. Just minimal. I want them to make sure the court systems are fair and just; that is their job.....obviously we need some form of military to protect from enemies both foreign and abroad. I just dont want my taxes to fund an army that has 800 bases around the world.

    That chart is not a representation of libertarianism, but i think its funny anyways.
     
  10. StevenC

    StevenC SS.org Regular

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    I don't know how things are in America, but where I come from the police force has a tendency to work better for one part of the community than the other. Therefore, I would prefer not to have a private police service.
     
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  11. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Yeah, it's like that over here just significantly worse. :/
     
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  12. StevenC

    StevenC SS.org Regular

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    Also, a private police service sounds like an ineffective way for a judiciary to operate.
     
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  13. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    The line between extreme libertarian and anarchist is typically regarded as a publicly funded military/national guard and police department.

    Maybe it's just me, but it seems like there's a little bit of a dogpile going on here. I won't comment as to how much deserved or undeserved it is, whether it be directed at me or toward @Unleash The Fury , but:

    I thought that the discussion was about the income tax, and making the argument of the form "you are opposed to peacetime personal income tax" = "there should be no taxes" (repeated endlessly) is simply a hyperbole, and I don't think it makes for an argument that will be respectful to both parties involved.

    As pointed out already, the USA existed for over a hundred years without implementing a peacetime personal income tax. We have a lot, and I mean a lot more federal programs now than we had before there was a peacetime personal federal income tax. I believe that there are serious problems with each of these programs, so they either need to be repaired or eliminated. I understand that eliminating them all indiscriminately would be a huge shock to the US economy at the fundamental level, so I would never suggest that; however, some programs that are flawed at their very premise should be re-evaluated to determine what problem they intended to solve, and then that problem should be addressed another way. This is such a broad topic (how do we fund government programs in general) that it's bound to be a wall of text that follows, if I'm even going to attempt to discuss this can of worms.

    For example, social security. The premise is that the federal government takes control of everyone's retirement accounts. Young people pay in, and old people take money out. The program also costs some money to operate. Well, to be frank, this program simply cannot work unless the population is increasing, and honestly, it shares too much strategy with the Ponzi Scheme to not shock anyone with half a thought about what it actually is. So, IMO, the whole thing needs to go away - actually, I think it's simply a matter of time before it has to go away or at least be restructured to siphon off tax funds from the general fund in bulk. At any rate, it was a bad premise from the beginning. Just save your own money. People who don't save their own money for retirement shouldn't have a proper retirement. If you are disabled from working, that's not "retirement," so let's keep comparing apples to apples before anyone goes there. Others who face financial hardships should rely on the community, since this is a community issue and not a government issue. If an entire community faces financial hardship, from what we've seen, the federal government bats somewhere between 0 and 10% at effectively helping the community out of trouble, so the communities would be better off asking each other for help.

    Health care is an issue that I think you could be very logical about and end up in one of two opposing stances; however, I feel quite strongly that the healthcare industry itself is taking advantage of sick people. Healthcare is way more expensive than it ought to be. Sure there is an advantage in keeping a high cashflow into the healthcare industry to bud new innovations, but frankly, when medical companies are using public funds to research whether Spiderman could actually stick to a wall, or whether a healthy diet gives people a lower mortality rate than a junk food diet, etc. It's a waste of fucking money, and when the funds come from the government, we are all paying for those shit studies. When these things are privately regulated, there are still problems when there is an excess of money flowing in. It's probably a very unpopular rationalization, but it's simple deduction that making laws to make sure that healthcare providers are financially accessible to everyone, without any regulation on how much the actual costs are, just contributes to the excess costs overall. It's like if I made bread cost $5000 per loaf, and then had a tax in effect such that anyone who can prove that he or she cannot afford a $5000 loaf of bread gets a tax credit to make that bread cost $2500, $1200, $600, or $300, depending on the maximum amount that person can afford. Well, shit, the bread is still way more expensive than it ought to be, the breadmakers are going to be raking in barrels of cash, and people are still going to have a hell of a time budgeting bread into their diets. We're going through the same thing with healthcare in the USA. The healthcare economy is sooo bloated with red tape and we are just adding more and more red tape to try to manage the existing red tape. Eventually, the whole thing is going to burst and we'll have a serious problem. The tug-o-war going on between the Dems and the GOP over addressing the problem or not will just lead to endless compromises that yield a half-assed attempt which will ultimately just accelerate the problem.

    The postal service is pretty essential. It does predate the peacetime personal federal income tax a bit, even though it is a publicly funded federal program, but now its funding is quite visibly not keeping up with federal spending in general. Maybe some of you were around when there was a serious discussion about charging a fee for emails. I mean, providing someone with electronic mail might not be as expensive as mailing a physical letter, but it does cost something to whomever provides the service, yet email ended up being free to send and receive. Hmm, the private sector won that round, since there is no better price for users than free. For parcels, USPS is competing with DHL, UPS, FedEx, etc., and the postage rates are all on par with each other. If the post office shut down today, I think UPS et al would be able to start offering an envelope delivery service to the public in a matter of months or maybe weeks, but they'd probably lose some significant portion of important letters and bills in the changeover. At any rate, even as a former postal worker, I think that life could continue without the postal service, should funding dry up.

    The police services in the USA are typically funded by the city or town (or municipality). There are also state-funded police, who typically are responsible for rural areas and interstate highways. We have some jurisdiction problems as a result. Maybe I'm on the interstate highway in the city of St. Clair Shores, Michigan, and I get pulled over by a cop from the City of Detroit, and he writes me a ticket for going 68 miles per hour in a 65 mile per hour zone. (This happened to me years ago) According to the City of Detroit, he was within his jurisdiction to do so. According to the State of Michigan, he did not. The conundrum for me is to choose to stick to the principles of logic and have the state and the city hash it out for years while I rot in a jail cell in a city that is notorious for having like 3 murders per day on average, or to pay the ticket and have the problem continue for everyone else. At the time, I chose the latter option. There are also jurisdiction problems in Vermont, where I live now, because no one seems to know where the legal town limit (border) lies. Sometimes people call the police and are told that it's not in their jurisdiction, even when it is, which means that no one will help. Obviously, if you have a lot of social status, this is far less likely to happen.

    I could rant for hours about why the policing culture in the USA is totally fubar. I know it's not even close to being the worst, but honestly, when I lived in Detroit and Indianapolis (actually moreso in Indy), I felt I was more likely to be harmed by the police than by a criminal. The police are often stressed out and on edge in cities like those, at least when they are responding to a 911 call. And, in the 1980s and 1990s in Michigan, it was "acceptable" for the cops to shoot a suspect who was trying to evade, armed or not. That's changed now, but back then when it was just one person in an encounter with a cop, the cop would be able to kill the person and, if no one was around to see, the cop could just say that the person tried to run away and that would be the end of it. So, it has been getting a lot better than it used to be, but I think we have a really long way to go before we are near "ideal."
     
  14. vilk

    vilk Very Regular

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    When we look at the ratio at which we spend on military, I think part of the solution is glaringly obvious. If we cut our military spending in half, we'd still have by and far the largest military budget, and also hundreds of billions of dollars to put to better use.

    Maybe it's only me, but I feel like people my age who have seen the infrastructure of the USA go downhill while we spend like fiends on a war that we basically don't care about whatsoever is going to see greatly reduced military budgets in the future. It's desensitized me or something. I don't even care if everyone in whatever sovereign nation(s) have some problem, it shouldn't be the responsibility of the American government to bail them out. If some people want to donate to private paramilitary companies that go out and kill the "bad guys" in whateverstan then by all means burn that skrilla, but I think it's morally/ethically corrupt to use the money of pacifists to fund a war they don't want. Spending that money on a national defense force is just fine, but spending on foreign wars of aggression? It's unacceptable.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
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  15. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    +3.6x10E74

    Obamacare was estimated to cost $110B/year. According to William Hartung, the military wastes a $33B on spoiled surplus supplies. So...

    If just running the military at the size it is without ordering excess supplies that pass their shelf lives before use could pay for one third of the ACA, imagine how much money the USA could save by scaling back international operations and simply focusing on domestic defense.
     
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  16. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Not to totally sidestep the rest of your argument but the minutae doesn't matter a whole lot when this is a large enough fallacy on it's own.

    Stating the obvious but you've pointed out that a government in a world entirely different from now, 100+ years ago was able to exist without a "peacetime person income tax", which is an entirely different argument from saying it's practical in 2017. ALSO stating the obvious, they had it that way and obviously decided it was in their best interest to implement the tax; which I'm sure was a hard sell, so they must've had good reason why the current system was necessary.

    Also, you're both starting to REALLY piss me off with "OMG, this is too OT, these arguments are unfair" stuff. We're actually down to talking tax in a tax thread and you're still pulling this shit. You're not the fucking moderators and you don't decide what's too far off-topic, I do and if you don't like it,don't fucking come in here.
     
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  17. narad

    narad SS.org Regular

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    Hey, works great for the US penal system.

    huehue...penal system...
     
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  18. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    It is a different world now, and there is no nation on earth quite like the USA, but there are still a few sovereign nations that do not collect a personal income tax, most of them either in the Middle East or the Caribbean, but there are also a couple others. But as I was trying to explain in my wall of text, it's really just about balancing the budget: less money in means less money out. If the federal government spends more, the states should be spending less, so I think that's why we've moved more toward a federal income tax as power has shifted more and more toward federal government. My personal issue is that the federal government doesn't do a very good job handling these programs efficiently, so a lot of tax revenue simply ends up being wasted.

    That was a regrettably vague statement on my part. I was trying to say something halfway clever about the political philosophies of the forum in general manifesting against another political philosophy with which two forum users seem to identify, yet probably don't really represent, but I got really lazy with that and it came out totally wrong. Sorry about that.
     
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  19. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Well THIS is an entirely different kettle of fish than frontloading your arguments about the federal government by calling into question "peactime personal income tax" as a whole.

    I'm a Democrat, not ashamed to say that but it's inaccurate to interpret that as thinking it means I'm "tax and spend, tax and spend, redistribute wealth, etc". There are hilarious levels of waste, fraud and abuse in government, in every agency, every department and at every level. My close family has worked in public office a lot of my entire life, as have close friends and I've worked WITH government and on a number of campaigns. I understand the number of ways the government can waste money, and it's not like I (or any reasonable person) agree with this continuing.

    Actually, I think *most* major parties and even the bigger independent parties are a lot closer on these issues than they seem sometimes. We all understand the importance of the military and police, we understand the importance of roads and bridge, the importance of healthcare, etc. There's just a difference in opinion of what's the most efficient way of doing so; whether that's in reference to cost effectiveness or quality of services.

    My position, I don't think our tax system is insanely, wildly out of whack. There's not much I want to do with my life that's entirely out of reach on a fair income in the current system, or like I'd be living like a king if there were no taxes at all. My biggest issue is that, for WHAT we pay, the quality of services we get in return is piss poor. I don't mind paying $10 for a cheeseburger at a decent restaurant, but I'm not going to pay $10 for a McDonald's cheeseburger. Once that comes into focus, you have a choice of deciding if the quality of the service is too low, or the tax burden for it is too high; to me, that's decided on rationally arriving at the importance of the service that's in question and objectively analyzing what's a fair level of service for all who participate.

    The problem we currently have is these insanely wild ideological swings every couple years, mixed with "career government workers"/departments with bloated budgets and a healthy dose of corruption. Republicans come in and overspend on their pet projects, which bloats the budget to them to an unreasonable level, people get sick of that so Democrats take control and overspend on THEIR pet projects but the departments protest so the opposing department budgets never shrink back to their original size, and everything just gets bigger and bigger, while the quality of service stays the same or gets worse. The only difference between me and Libertarians in that regard is that I don't think the solution is slashing the budget and tax system to zero; its to audit the departments top to bottom, eliminate what's necessary to shrink some (or a lot) of them back to realistic size and place an increased focus on results and on stability.
     
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  20. jaxadam

    jaxadam SS.org Regular

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    It's 2018 bro.
     
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