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The Common Sense Party
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#303656 - 11/02/17 03:26 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
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Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 15528
Some elucidation regarding the civil-military divide: NIGER GREEN BERET DEATHS EXPOSE A CLEAR DIVIDE BETWEEN SOLDIERS AND CIVILIANS - Newsweek.
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#303657 - 11/02/17 07:45 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1738
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
The best example of the civil-military thing that I have seen is in Myanmar/Burma (was renamed Myanmar by the army although the natives tend to still call it Burma after the largest tribe in that country. In that country their 500,000 man army is completely removed from the rest of the country and their bases are isolated communities within the country. They have their own everything, including golf courses. Soldiers, I was told, do not marry outside of the army (this was explained to me by a woman there when I asked why she wasn't married. She replied that between the army and the monks there weren't all that many men left. She also said that the military establishments were so isolated from the rest of the people because they feared the rest of the people would hurt them (I never figured out if she was kidding or not)). However, the fact remains. The army, for instance, by constitutional decree (which the army wrote), gets to assign half of their legislature with whoever they want.

The current Muslim/Buddhist thing over there is a problem because that country is split into 3 distinct communities; the normal people, the military, and the Buddhist religion. In other words nobody really knows who is in charge of what. Its a very strange place............. When we were there (for a month) the Muslims were being attacked by a Nazi-like Buddhist monk and his followers (really!), now it seems that the army has joined up with the monks to slaughter the Muslims. The average citizenry seems to just be keeping their heads down and hope it all works out in the end.

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#303658 - 11/02/17 08:00 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1738
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
As far as the tax thing is concerned. I am for whatever they can come up with that is seen fair to all with absolutely no favorites. I am also for EVERYBODY in the country paying taxes, not hidden taxes but taxes understood to be going to the government to pay the bills. I would, naturally, expect that the poor would pay very little - but they would pay something. Right now, from what I can tell, half the country pays no taxes for one reason or another. If you are not supporting your capitalist country, with some of your capital/money then you are not supporting your country. I think that should be a rule. To give a damn, about just about anything, you have to have some skin in the game.

My reason for supporting a national sales tax is because that seems to be more fair. I also support taxation by all taxing districts; federal, state, county, city, etc. The devil, of course, is in the details. A perfect system, of course, is unlikely to exist but I also believe that those with the big bucks should contribute more than those with few bucks. Those with billions, for instance, should be taxed accordingly (I can remember the mythic 50's, where many want to return. They tend to forget that them with the big buck paid really big taxes (up to 85% of income)). If they buy more stuff than them without much then they would, by definition, be paying more than those with little. I would also think that paying taxes on EVERY transaction is the best way (and might even get rid of some middlemen who are unnecessary). the trick would be setting the sales taxes. For instance (this will stir up some) everytime a stock is sold there should be some kind of tax on that sale. It could be, for instance, only a penny per trade but it would be something (and I, incidentally, trade a bit now and then and would not think that to be onerous. On the other hand the big boys who do a million computerized trades a day might find it onerous and my response to that one would be "tough s**t"). There is also problems from state and fed in that states are being forced to spend more and more because the fed is supporting less and less. All in all this is a seriously pesky problem and, as far as I can tell, the current Republican solutions are just plain silly. The only good that will come of their efforts is that there is likely to be a BIG change in congress if they continue down their dusty pot holed road to self destruction (this assumes the electorate will actually be capable of acting in their own self interest).


Edited by jgw (11/02/17 08:02 PM)

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#303659 - 11/02/17 09:22 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
Greger Online   content

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 13828
Loc: Florida
Quote:
My reason for supporting a national sales tax is because that seems to be more fair.

Supporters of the Fair Tax Proposal agree with you. I don't.
While on the surface it might appear to be fair, the biggest problem is that the poor and middle class would bear the brunt of most taxation because they spend a larger percentage of their income on goods and services. Our income doesn't stack up in tax free piles of money we are never going to spend.
The proposal calls for a 23% sales tax on all goods and services to generate the same income for the government that the current tax code provides.
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#303671 - 11/03/17 07:52 AM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 15528
As earlier noted, simple solutions tend to become simplistic when they fail to consider the unintended (but predictable) results of those actions. As Greger points out, sales taxes are, by their very nature, aggressively regressive and terribly inefficient on the scale proposed. As a result they would need to be grossly high to make up for the revenue lost from more efficient methods.

Collection of those taxes, moreover, would require a much more intrusive and, again, inefficient administrative structure to collect it. I agree that a per-transaction tax for commodity/stock trades would ameliorate those conditions, somewhat, but that moderation would have the expected effect of slowing economic activity - offsetting somewhat whatever gains might have been achieved. I like the concept, but the consequences have to be considered.

Going back to the four principles I previously put forth: would such a scheme raise sufficient revenue, be efficient, equitable and effective?
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#303672 - 11/03/17 10:15 AM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7094
Loc: North San Diego County
There already is a small tax on each stock sale.

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#303677 - 11/03/17 07:45 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1738
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
I thought that small tax on stock sales didn't make it. I did a search (probably missed it) but, as far as I can tell there is a kindofa tax based on capital gains. I won't even start on capital gains as that one seems to be a seriously moving target and depends on how stuff is setup at the beginning. Trump, for instance, was able to finesse millions out of that one. The last one that amused was incorporating wills and anything paid to folks in the will becomes a clever tax dodge.

I guess I should add that I agree that there is no really simple way to have a fair and equitable tax. I am not sure that there even is such a thing. I do know some of the 1% and their main quibble over taxes is the the utter belief that gov mis-spends ALL tax dollars. If they could be convinced that the money is being spent wisely I suspect they would not be quite so greedy. The problem is the ability of many to demonize just about anything and everything in an effort to gain some kind of recognition in the world of lies and demonization. The other problem is that there are any numbere of people who buy into this garbage. I have no solution for that one.

I have however, suggested that gov take a prime time hour from pbs, on a daily basis, to explain agencies and gov doings to the American public and call for public input. This sort of thing, I believe, might help in some ways and in other ways, especially when they are wasting money, not help that much except to point out error of ways. Right now, gov is just a huge black hole and gov has made absolutely no effort to explain itself to ANYBODY! I also suspect this lack is what drives the drive to earmark taxes.


Edited by jgw (11/03/17 08:07 PM)

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#303679 - 11/03/17 08:03 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7094
Loc: North San Diego County
Quote:
anything paid to folks in the will becomes a clever tax dodge


Anything up to 5.49 million or so, double if it is from a couple. After that it is taxed at 40%. There are estimates that only about 0.2% of people have to pay. But for a few families (like Trump's) 5 million is nothing and the tax is huge.

Very interesting thing from a few years back: Republicans in Congress were willing to go from 5 million to 3 million exemption if they could get a few percentage points shaved of the amount in excess. If you do the math and figure out who that benefits, it is people with over 100 million dollar estates. It shows very clearly who they work for! People with just 3-5 million dollar estates are bums to them. They were willing to sell them down the river in spite of all their talk about poor ranchers and small business owners.

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#303931 - 11/14/17 08:09 PM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1738
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
I have been giving a bit more thought to this stuff. I am not sure that we are not on the edge of complete and utter disaster. I am suggesting this because I am not convinced that we are not only due but it might be fair.

For instance, we live in a Democracy and everybody (at least in theory) votes. Those votes decide our wishes and desires and they count. So, lets think on that one and how things work.

Our elected class has accomplished a number of things.
Drug Companies have managed to get congress to pass a law that our own government is forbidden to negotiate prices
We have now been fighting the same war for 16 years and there is no sense it will ever end as its unwinnable
We (gov) has 'loaned', literally, trillions to students to get educated and charged them approximately double the normal interest rate
Our current government has reduced health care expenditures by close to a trillion dollars
Political advertisers need not tell anybody who they are (congress has consistently been unable to fix this, either side)
Our government actually passed a law so that anybody holding somebody's information is not responsible for that information
Banks can no longer be sued by groups of victims.
We continue with ethanol even thought its not good for engines, it continues to be subsidized, is bad for the environment, and it is responsible for rising food prices - worldwide
Our system of education sucks and our students spend less time being instructed that virtually schooling in the entire rest of the world.
Our healthcare costs over 2 times what the rest of the world pays and is not all that good
We have elected a leader that thinks that Nazis are "good people"
We have a two party political system where both parties are interested, apparently and only, in winning and little else
We have a war on drugs upon which we have spent a trillion dollars, that is ineffectual, doesn't work and solutions that do work (Portugal is an example)
We have a problem with guns. Examination of virtually all other industrialized nations control their guns but not us! We are held in thrall by the NRA which is funded by the gun manufacturers and our government has no power over this organization because that organization threatens our elected class and they knuckle under (little lack of integrity, backbone, honesty and all the rest of it here?)

The above list can be easily added to by just about anybody who is reading this. My point is that its the citizens of this country who have brought this on us. They have been bamboozled by all sorts. I suspect the worst is the simple fact that religions can now preach politics and not get called on it. In the good old days any religion preaching politics lost their tax exception, no more. Its still against the law but politics have overruled the law. I am not sure what the fix is to stop the bamboozle but somebody better figure out one. Huge numbers of voters not only are bamboozled but are stalwart in their right to believe non factual baloney. In other words large numbers of American citizens seeem to actually be proud of the simple fact that they believe flat out lies and, as far as I can tell, people actually think this is a right! So, we have a voting public which seems to be ignorant (and proud of it), deluded (and in denial), or just can't be bothered (close to 50% in that category).

So, basically, we are not, by just about any standard, a citizenry that has no any real honor, integrity, or even the capacity to act in our own best interest. We are, in other words, not a real deserving group. I am not sure what happens to such a population but, as far as I can see, whatever does happen its not gonna be real good unless we change our ways and it doesn't look like that's gonna happen real soon (except, hopefully, how we treat females of the race).

I would also point out that there are places on earth where their leaders and government actually serve the people. The nations of north Europe, for instance. Norway, for instance, is rated the happiest nation on earth. Norway is one of the most heavily taxed countries in the world with a total tax burden of roughly 45% of GDP– almost twice the US. VAT here is a whopping 25%. Personal income tax rates border 55%. Corporate profits tax ranges from 28% to as high as 78%. In spite of that the people of Norway like their government, leaders, etc. We, on the other hand, we distrust our gov, despise our congress, etc. Think about it (kinda depressing).

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#303935 - 11/15/17 12:23 AM Re: The Common Sense Party [Re: jgw]
matthew Offline
newbie

Registered: 03/24/16
Posts: 319
'
When societies reach this level of dysfunction, they do not reform --- they break --- and out of the disaster something new arises --- not necessarily an improvement on the previous situation.
.
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