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Author Topic:   Devising the best taxation
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 31 of 70 (439666)
12-09-2007 6:32 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by Silent H
12-09-2007 6:01 PM


Re: Fixing the system
He appeared to be referring to the Scandinavian countries.

I never said he wasn't. Did you think I'd never heard of Norway, Sweden, or Denmark, nor knew anything about their politics and customs?

Did it occur to you to try to figure out what I might have meant when I said there were no socialist countries? Or did you simply assume that I was such an idiot that I had never heard of any nation located outside the borders of the United States?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 25 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 6:01 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 32 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 6:45 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4156 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 32 of 70 (439672)
12-09-2007 6:45 PM
Reply to: Message 31 by crashfrog
12-09-2007 6:32 PM


Re: Fixing the system
There is absolutely no need to be angry. I was not calling you an idiot or downgrading you in any way.

Your reply to him was that no such thing as a socialist nation exists on this planet. Either you weren't aware... and many are not... that the Scandinavian nations are socialist, or you were making some semantic argument against NJ (that would have no bearing on what he was saying).

I assumed the former, but in either case, I simply laid out that they are considered such and that was what he was referring to. You might note that I started my reply by saying in fairness to you the definition of a socialist nation is not solid... which opens up the semantics thing, which Chiro just reinforced.

I have no understanding why you are getting upset, or attacking me personally. This is like one of the most non-emotional exchanges anyone should be having.


h
"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." - Robert E. Howard

This message is a reply to:
 Message 31 by crashfrog, posted 12-09-2007 6:32 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 33 by crashfrog, posted 12-09-2007 6:53 PM Silent H has responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 33 of 70 (439675)
12-09-2007 6:53 PM
Reply to: Message 32 by Silent H
12-09-2007 6:45 PM


Re: Fixing the system
Your reply to him was that no such thing as a socialist nation exists on this planet. Either you weren't aware... and many are not... that the Scandinavian nations are socialist

We covered this. They're not socialist. They're social democracies. Socialism refers to public ownership of the "means of production", and in those countries private citizens own means of production.

You might note that I started my reply by saying in fairness to you the definition of a socialist nation is not solid...

That didn't seem to stop you from acting like I had never heard of Scandinavia. Did it occur to you, at any point, that I was saying that those Scandinavian nations aren't actually socialist, particularly in the way conservatives mean, and that maybe you might address that instead of naked, erroneous assertions that Sweden, Norway, and the rest are "socialist" according to Holmes' private dictionary?

For God's sake. You really don't have any control over it, do you? You just can't help but act dishonestly.

I have no understanding why you are getting upset, or attacking me personally.

It's the relentless dishonesty, Holmes, just like it always is.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 32 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 6:45 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 36 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 7:22 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6831
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 34 of 70 (439678)
12-09-2007 7:03 PM
Reply to: Message 29 by Silent H
12-09-2007 6:23 PM


Just trying to clarify.
So I suppose I am not a "traditional" and definitely not a "Marxist" socialist. Does that make me not a socialist?

As is often the case in any natural language, a word can have a variety of different meanings, and confusion can result when some of those meanings are rather close and related. I was trying to keep the thread from bogging down due to an argument on semantics, or from becoming confused through equivocation.

Socialism can have a broad sense of meanings. One is designation for a very broad range of types of social organization, from your social democratic Scandinavia to anarchism. In that sense, you would be a socialist.

In a more narrow sense, socialism refers to a society where the means of production is managed and controlled by the workers themselves. Instead of land, factories, and distribution networks and the like being owned by individuals or investors, they are controlled by, say, cooperatives and communes or worker elected councils. With this meaning, Scandinavia is definitely not socialist.

Socialism can also refer to a social theory that the economy be managed not in order for individuals to make personal profit, but in order to provide for the general welfare of everyone in society -- it is in this type of state-owned enterprises and heavily regulated capitalist corporations have a role.

Me, I will often use each of these different meanings depending on context while trying to be careful to avoid equivocation.

By the way, despite my know-it-all attitude, I really don't know that much about political economy. I find most political theory too utopian to be very useful -- like Marx, I have a distaste for utopian thinking.


If it's truly good and powerful, it deserves to engender a thousand misunderstandings. -- Ben Ratcliffe

This message is a reply to:
 Message 29 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 6:23 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 37 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 7:54 PM Chiroptera has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 31753
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 35 of 70 (439681)
12-09-2007 7:15 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by Silent H
12-09-2007 6:09 PM


Re: "Fair Tax" is no such thing...
It gets even better. Since the tax is only at the retail level, it is only the endpoint retailers that will bear the burden and collection responsibilities and costs. The biggest burden will fall on the small business.

There is one other hidden feature of the plan, and that is the "refund". That will require a registration of each family that is eligible to collect the so called refund.

As usual, the rich get off and the poor pay the price.


Immigration has been a problem Since 1607!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 27 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 6:09 PM Silent H has not yet responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4156 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 36 of 70 (439682)
12-09-2007 7:22 PM
Reply to: Message 33 by crashfrog
12-09-2007 6:53 PM


Re: Fixing the system
What is the problem? I am not, and have not insulted you. This is a very simple and non-emotionally charged subject.

We covered this. They're not socialist. They're social democracies. Socialism refers to public ownership of the "means of production", and in those countries private citizens own means of production.

No, we did not "cover" this. As was pointed out the term socialism has a variety of uses. To many millions of people it includes what might be termed social democracies. There is no right or wrong answer on this point.

It is very much like Protestants calling Catholics non-Xian... and vice-versa. Either can hold that view, but in a practical sense it is not accurate.

NJ was simply discussing rates of taxation. He compared 40% with the level paid in "socialist" nations, which is the term the people in those nations used. There is no reason to argue his statement was invalid, especially at this point. The only correction might be to say to him that some members of the socialist movement feel they are better termed social democrats.

Did it occur to you, at any point, that I was saying that those Scandinavian nations aren't actually socialist, particularly in the way conservatives mean,

Yes that did occur to me. That is why I said, and I just repeated, that to be fair to you the terminology is not fixed. If you cannot understand that that was a statement allowing for a semantic argument about "socialism", than I don't know what I can tell you.

I did not assume you were making that kind of argument, since it wouldn't have made sense given the context.

and that maybe you might address that instead of naked, erroneous assertions that Sweden, Norway, and the rest are "socialist" according to Holmes' private dictionary?

These are not erroneous assertions on my part. The wiki article Chiro linked to and I quoted (in response to his post) clearly showed that they can be called socialist. It is simply that some people who are more traditional or Marxist do not like that usage.

For God's sake. You really don't have any control over it, do you?

I am not being sarcastic, or mean spirited when I tell you that you really need to get some help. I have not done anything wrong here, and wasn't even trying to put you down.

If anything, assuming you hadn't known that they were socialist, I was happy to share that information. Not everyone does know that, and it isn't a crime. I like to talk about that with others.

If your political position is traditional socialist, or Marxist, and are having problems with the many millions of people who use the term socialist or "moderate socialist", then your problem is not with me. I am not making it up. And all you have to say is... I think that is not the most accurate term. Then we will say... we think it is. And then we can wrangle about the most practical terms.

If you want a debate on what would be most practical, and it seems like Chiro would be interested, I'm game. But that said, whatever we agree will not change the fact that millions of others will still refer to themselves as socialist and be right.


h
"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." - Robert E. Howard

This message is a reply to:
 Message 33 by crashfrog, posted 12-09-2007 6:53 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 38 by crashfrog, posted 12-09-2007 7:55 PM Silent H has responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4156 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 37 of 70 (439688)
12-09-2007 7:54 PM
Reply to: Message 34 by Chiroptera
12-09-2007 7:03 PM


Re: Just trying to clarify.
I find most political theory too utopian to be very useful -- like Marx, I have a distaste for utopian thinking.

Heheheh. I'm a dystopian. I believe all systems will have flaws which is why no single, static system should be followed. Its really just an ongoing game, trying to find practical solutions. Grand economic theories seem like mental masturbation to me.

I like the personal freedom and flexibility of open markets... free trade. However, that has practical limits as wealth naturally shifts. That ends up breaking the market system (as well as causing suffering). This can be fixed by employing mechanisms to shift money back into the system (which also relieves suffering of those at the bottom). Finally there are limited resources, or common needs which can most efficiently be dealt with by communal ownership/investment. So why not do it that way, instead of reinventing it in a for profit system (which by definition would mean less efficient)?

This results in a system which many call socialist. Indeed the Scandinavian systems are very close to what I would call "the most" practical.

I realize that the term socialism has a broad array of meanings, and I'm glad you've entered into this to help clarify the situation.

The only criticism I might have with anything you've stated, is how distant you portray Scandinavian systems from the narrow definition.

Instead of land, factories, and distribution networks and the like being owned by individuals or investors, they are controlled by, say, cooperatives and communes or worker elected councils. With this meaning, Scandinavia is definitely not socialist.

As far as I know, the markets are directly controlled by their gov'ts, which also have a large say in limiting company activities. They may step in as required. This is also true with regard to land ownership. Wouldn't that essentially be the same thing as communal ownership? Its just not constantly micromanaged by the commune.

That said, I am not an expert on these gov'ts, and am open to more info on the subject. Maybe they are more open than I thought.

I will often use each of these different meanings depending on context while trying to be careful to avoid equivocation.

I agree. Would you agree that NJ was not committing some huge error in referring to the Scandinavian nations as socialist (for sake of reference)? And that it is a bit heavy handed to claim that no socialist nation actually exists on the planet in reply to such a reference?

Or in any case, would you please give crash an enema?


h
"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." - Robert E. Howard

This message is a reply to:
 Message 34 by Chiroptera, posted 12-09-2007 7:03 PM Chiroptera has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 44 by Chiroptera, posted 12-09-2007 9:51 PM Silent H has not yet responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 38 of 70 (439689)
12-09-2007 7:55 PM
Reply to: Message 36 by Silent H
12-09-2007 7:22 PM


Re: Fixing the system
What is the problem?

Your lack of honesty, as always.

I am not, and have not insulted you.

??? I never said that you had.

Are you really puzzled by what's going on, here? How can you be when I've explained it over and over and over again?

No, we did not "cover" this.

But we did. Message 23, of mine. Relentlessly dishonest of you. Not a page later and you're already pretending like it didn't happen.

He compared 40% with the level paid in "socialist" nations, which is the term the people in those nations used.

But there are no socialist nations. There are some social democracies, they include those countries you mentioned.

If words mean anything at all, Holmes, then we should use them according to their definitions. If those nations are "socialist", then the United States is socialist. I mean, we have public services here, do we not? We have public health care - for some individuals. Several such programs, in fact. We even have a program called Social Security that all Americans are entitled to payments from.

Yet, the United States is not socialist. If the US is not then there's really no reason to call those other nations "socialist", either.

I did not assume you were making that kind of argument, since it wouldn't have made sense given the context.

But, it did make sense to you that I had never heard of Norway, Denmark, and Sweden?

I am not being sarcastic, or mean spirited when I tell you that you really need to get some help. I have not done anything wrong here

Except, as always, be relentlessly dishonest, disingenuous, and misrepresent the arguments of your opponents.

Emotion doesn't have anything to do with it and I don't understand why you continue to characterize this as an "emotional" issue, or that I'm being "emotional." I literally don't understand what you're getting at with that.

But, you're objectively dishonest in your posts. An increasing number of participants here are beginning to observe it - because you don't even try to excuse it. Nothing emotional about it - you've been shown to be dishonest in your posts. Where's the emotion?

If anything, assuming you hadn't known that they were socialist, I was happy to share that information.

But I know that they are not, and I explained that they are not. You're simply objectively wrong, as I've shown (and as you've lied about.)

Why would I be ignorant of conditions in Sweden, particularly, having spent 5 years at a predominantly-Swedish college? I've known a number of Swedes. I hope to visit that country some day. I'm obviously not an expert on conditions there but why would you assume I was completely ignorant?

And if you didn't, why did you think that I hadn't considered Sweden, Norway, and Denmark when I said that there were no socialist nations? Why would you assume that I would be that stupid?

And all you have to say is... I think that is not the most accurate term.

But I've already said that. Why would you have assumed that I was making any other argument but that? And why are you now pretending like that hasn't been my argument all along - that "socialist" is not the accurate term to refer to nations like Sweden, Norway, and Denmark?

Why did you assume, instead, that I simply hadn't ever heard of Sweden, Norway, or Denmark? Why the relentless dishonest and assumption of ignorance, Holmes?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 36 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 7:22 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 39 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 8:09 PM crashfrog has responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4156 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 39 of 70 (439692)
12-09-2007 8:09 PM
Reply to: Message 38 by crashfrog
12-09-2007 7:55 PM


Re: Fixing the system
Why did you assume, instead, that I simply hadn't ever heard of Sweden, Norway, or Denmark?

I never said, nor implied you'd never heard of the countries. The most I ever assumed, was that you might not be aware that they are socialist.

Why would I be ignorant of conditions in Sweden, particularly, having spent 5 years at a predominantly-Swedish college? I've known a number of Swedes. I hope to visit that country some day. I'm obviously not an expert on conditions there but why would you assume I was completely ignorant?

Despite all of this "experience" you have just repeated that they are not socialist. All I can say is that if you treat them on this subject in the same way you are treating me, you might not have such a great time after all.

The one thing I constantly received when I lived there, and from Scandinavians I have met elsewhere, were discussions of their socialism and its success. They usually use that as a counterpoint to US conservative ideas that say socialism has failed. Now clearly I am not stating that every Scandinavian says this, nor that all Scandinavians like socialism. But that was a common experience, and it was not disputed by the wiki cite... nor Moore's Sicko DVD, if you choose to check it out.

In any case, we are done here, and for some time to come. I did not rate your accusations or hostility. You need help... seriously.


h
"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." - Robert E. Howard

This message is a reply to:
 Message 38 by crashfrog, posted 12-09-2007 7:55 PM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 41 by crashfrog, posted 12-09-2007 8:42 PM Silent H has not yet responded

  
SGT Snorkel
Junior Member (Idle past 4040 days)
Posts: 23
From: Boone, IA USA
Joined: 07-25-2006


Message 40 of 70 (439693)
12-09-2007 8:25 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Hyroglyphx
12-09-2007 1:11 PM


Re: Fixing the system
We now have approximately a 40% compulsive tax which is higher or the equivalent to most socialist nations.

I actually take the time to check each year. When I add my big three; Federal, State, and Property, I have never paid more than 16% of my gross income. Sales tax here is 6%. Even if you consider FICA, I am under 30%.

When I was in Kuwait, I was talking to some soldiers in the Spanish Army. One Private said he paid almost 75% of his gross in taxes. Where do your figures come from?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by Hyroglyphx, posted 12-09-2007 1:11 PM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 41 of 70 (439696)
12-09-2007 8:42 PM
Reply to: Message 39 by Silent H
12-09-2007 8:09 PM


Re: Fixing the system
The one thing I constantly received when I lived there, and from Scandinavians I have met elsewhere, were discussions of their socialism and its success.

You keep harping on this and I don't see the relevance. That some in those countries think those countries are socialist doesn't seem to matter any more than the fact that Rush Limbaugh and his ilk refer to our government as socialist.

You need help... seriously.

What I need is for you to be honest when you reply to me, instead of being disingenuous. It's really not a difficult concept. I can't understand why you continue to struggle with it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 39 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 8:09 PM Silent H has not yet responded

  
Hyroglyphx
Member
Posts: 5863
From: Austin, TX
Joined: 05-03-2006
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 42 of 70 (439698)
12-09-2007 9:11 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by Silent H
12-09-2007 4:54 PM


Re: "Fair Tax" is no such thing...
The fair tax is not a fair tax, and it is not even a practical system as currently proposed. By taxing purchases, the debt of the gov't is shifted most directly on the poorest. Even middle income brackets will pay a greater % of their salaries in taxes than the more affluent. That makes no sense at all.

It probably makes no sense because that isn't true at all. How does it affect the poor or the rich since its a system that doesn't penalize someone for being either rich or poor, which the current system does?

Its all relative in, if you buy more, you pay more taxes. If you buy less, you pay less taxes. We already do this with a sales tax, except that it will eliminate the hidden taxes embedded in to products.

So now, your entire paycheck goes to you with no deductions, unless of course you direct deposit a certain percentage in to a 401k plan. But even then, its your money. And the IRS won't touch it, or a percentage of your 401k because they won't exist under this plan.

I mean where does the name "fair" even come from, in that regard?

What isn't fair about it? Under a progressive tax reform, it penalizes people with a Robin Hood effect. This keeps the welfare state going. Under a progressive reform, like almost social programs, there is no incentive to actually work for anything because Big Brother wipes our little bottom for us from cradle to grave.

That is NOT the job of the government. The sole responsibility of the government is to protect its citizens.

This of course means we will still need an IRS. Some organization will have to collect and review INCOME in order to determine the amount or necessity of a rebate... and find those who are cheating on their reports.

That's the genius of it. You won't be able to cheat anything because you don't fill anything out. If people don't generally get away with Sales Tax fraud, they won't get away with it under this plan either. Currently, the IRS practically spends more money trying to collect people's income tax than what people would pay ordinarily. What a waste, and a mark of complete inefficiency.

Now this is the clever part. Right now people of low income do not have to file, and rich people do. This scheme makes it necessary for poor people to file, and lifts the obligation on rich people to do so.

You wouldn't have to file for anything... What are you filing for if it eliminates the income tax? All you have to do is go out and buy whatever you want. Where are you getting this information from?

The so-called "fair tax" is a system by rich people, for rich people. Pushing all obligations and debts on those without.

That's absurd and I can't believe this myth perpetuates still. Why would any nation want poor people but make rich people richer? Why? They wouldn't. What nations want is to make a very large middle class, with a small low and high class. And of the systems you claim do this, why do you think the Fair Tax, of all the systems, would do this?


“This life’s dim windows of the soul, distorts the heavens from pole to pole, and goads you to believe a lie, when you see with and not through the eye.” -William Blake

This message is a reply to:
 Message 20 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 4:54 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 43 by Chiroptera, posted 12-09-2007 9:16 PM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded
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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6831
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 43 of 70 (439699)
12-09-2007 9:16 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by Hyroglyphx
12-09-2007 9:11 PM


Re: "Fair Tax" is no such thing...
That is NOT the job of the government. The sole responsibility of the government is to protect its citizens.

Actually, I think the main responsibility of the government is to make sure that resources are distributed in a fair and equitable manner.

But then, I am a socialist.


If it's truly good and powerful, it deserves to engender a thousand misunderstandings. -- Ben Ratcliffe

This message is a reply to:
 Message 42 by Hyroglyphx, posted 12-09-2007 9:11 PM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6831
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 6.6


Message 44 of 70 (439703)
12-09-2007 9:51 PM
Reply to: Message 37 by Silent H
12-09-2007 7:54 PM


Re: Just trying to clarify.
I believe all systems will have flaws which is why no single, static system should be followed. Its really just an ongoing game, trying to find practical solutions.

Heh. That's why I tend to be an extreme democrat -- democracy seems to me to be the most reliable (or perhaps the least unreliable) method to ensure that the systems in place adapt to new viewpoints and new situations in as fair and equitable way as possible.

-

This is also true with regard to land ownership. Wouldn't that essentially be the same thing as communal ownership? Its just not constantly micromanaged by the commune.

The main difference is in who is considered to have the greatest vested interest in the land or factory. In more traditional socialism, it is a tenet that the workers themselves should have control over the goods and services that they produce, and so the concern should be under the direct control of the workers in that concern.

In the case of a contemporary social democratic economy, consideration is given to the fact the very large factories or even entire industries have a great effect on the nation as a whole, and so the entire nation should have a say in how it is run, either indirectly through regulation by the democratically elected government, or directly through directors appointed by the democratically elected government. In either case, the interests of the workers are watched over by strong unions.

If I understand the ideology behind social democracy (and there isn't any guarantee that I do -- or it may be different in different instances), the idea isn't so much to recognize efficiencies of the market as it is to recognize the interests of the population as a whole in the managing of the economy.


If it's truly good and powerful, it deserves to engender a thousand misunderstandings. -- Ben Ratcliffe

This message is a reply to:
 Message 37 by Silent H, posted 12-09-2007 7:54 PM Silent H has not yet responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4156 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 45 of 70 (439708)
12-09-2007 10:14 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by Hyroglyphx
12-09-2007 9:11 PM


Re: "Fair Tax" is no such thing...
Heheheh... I was pretty mean on the fair tax. But I tells ya, I can't stands it. What's interesting is that it isn't a conservative/liberal issue. Liberals such as Gravel and if I remember right even Frank Zappa have argued that this was a good system. Despite being a non-partisan issue, I do believe it is a class issue. And it does shift the burden onto the poorer elements of society.

Instead of answering your points one by one, let me try and answer them in a clearer discussion of the tax and how it would work (from my perspective).

The amount of money used by the gov't currently comes from (or is supposed to come from) the wealthier citizens and companies. That is as wealth is removed from circulation by any entity, a portion of that is taken by the gov't to cover services necessary to ensure the continued functioning of our nation. We currently "take" more from entities as they earn more, and we cannot take more than a person makes... which I realize is not the same as how much someone saves.

Taxing sales, means that the debt has shifted from entities removing capital from the system, to anyone inserting money into the system. As such it now penalizes, shifts the debt to, those who spend a greater portion of their income than others. That is by all practical reality, the poor. And since we are shifting the debt away from income, current sales taxes must increase. For those who are poor, that means they will be hit with a larger tax increase (as % of income). Let me use a hypothetical example...

The basic cost of living may be assumed to be equal for all people. For example let us say it costs on average $10K/yr for a single person to stay alive and functioning in modern America. Let us also say for sake of argument that $1K of that is in taxes (under the new policy).

For a person making 10K they are paying 10% of their income in taxes. For a person making 100K they would only be paying 1%, and so on up. The tax burden gets less as one makes more. The argument is often made that people making more will buy more and so pay more, but the point is that it is completely under their control. They DON'T have to buy more things. Whereas the poor MUST buy that same necessary amount... they cannot choose to buy less to reduce their burden. The GREATEST tax burden will be felt by those making the least, which is the very thing rich people are complaining about right now.

Framers of the sales tax realized at least one error, in that people who do not make a certain amount will be taxed out of existence. Thus they include a necessary "rebate" for purchases. So for sake of our example people making less than 10K would get money to make up the difference. The first problem with this is that it is impossible to accurately estimate what a person will need in purchases, so I'm not sure how the forward rebates will work so as not to strand people who had to make unexpected purchases.

The second problem has to do with filing paperwork on income. In order to receive the rebate people will need to file their income just the same as they always have. This is mentioned within the wiki article. The only people who will no longer be accountable for their income are those making more.

So this results in a double hit to the poorest section. Those earning the least will not see a change except for an increased tax burden (% wise).

The great illusion seems to be that people are free to choose how much they make and how much they MUST spend. This is not the case. If that were true sales tax might be a great system. That it is not, means those without power are stuck paying the tab.

I might also add Jar's points. The wealthy could easily make purchases outside the nation to save money. They could also use corporate accounts, or supplies, which apparently will not be taxed.

Regarding welfare, well that is another issue. What I'm arguing about here is explicitly the working poor. These people are not necessarily having anyone wipe their butts for them, and often enough must wipe the butts of everyone else just to keep food on the table. The less you make while WORKING, the more you MUST pay in taxes. That is a huge switch in taxation methodology.

And I want to restate an important point. Taxing sales actually penalizes those who are keeping the engine of our nation running. Markets require people spending, not saving. This form of taxation penalizes people for spending, and rewards saving. The working poor, who may already not be able to save, will have even less ability to save. And from a business standpoint it also sucks. You cannot sell things based on a market value, but rather based on the needs of the gov't. Let us not forget, under this system prices will have to go up and down based on the govt's needs. Why should I (as a business owner) have to be working for the US gov't?

Make sure, I am not saying we should stick with the current system... or bureaucracy. It sucks. I'm not one of the people arguing against everything you said in the OP. Only I don't find sales tax as a solution. I think the flat income tax (which has had mainly conservative proponents recently) is the best system. Without exemptions, and placed on a single payer basis, the bureaucracy would be greatly reduced.


h
"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." - Robert E. Howard

This message is a reply to:
 Message 42 by Hyroglyphx, posted 12-09-2007 9:11 PM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 46 by Chiroptera, posted 12-09-2007 10:45 PM Silent H has responded

  
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