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#304549 - 12/21/17 06:37 AM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 15681
I will not personally be hurt by this tax cut, except when it destroys the economy and the government we all share. I'm just offended by the crass and careless greed that inspired it. As I have reiterated, there is no economic basis for it, no policy basis for it, no rational basis for it, or even a political basis for it. There is, however, a greed basis for it - crass, despicable, overweening, obscene greed.

40% for the 1%.
_________________________
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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#304550 - 12/21/17 05:01 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
journeyman

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 707
Well here's a growing thought on that: Seeds of destruction, roots of despair?

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#304551 - 12/21/17 05:41 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: NW Ponderer]
rporter314 Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/18/03
Posts: 6284
Loc: Highlands, Tx
shouldn't that be

Eve of Destruction

"Yeah my blood's so mad feels like coagulating
I'm sitting here just contemplatin'
I can't twist the truth it knows no regulation
Handful of senators don't pass legislation
And marches alone can't bring integration
When human respect is disintegratin'
This whole crazy world is just too frustratin'"
Barry McGuire

written in a different time but maybe they are all the same
_________________________
ignorance is the enemy
without equality there is no liberty

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#304552 - 12/21/17 06:34 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: NW Ponderer]
chunkstyle Offline
journeyman

Registered: 10/02/07
Posts: 707
Whoops wrong link out. My bad meant to post the intergenerational fight that seems to be playing out right now:
Boomertown or bust


Edited by chunkstyle (12/21/17 06:35 PM)

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#304554 - 12/21/17 07:26 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: chunkstyle]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 15681
You Cannot Be Too Cynical About the Republican Tax Bill - NYT, Opinion.
Quote:
The rush to enact the tax bill was designed to mask — as a break for the middle class — what is in fact a $1.4 trillion package of benefits for key donors and lobbyists, the richest members of Congress, President Trump, his family and other families like his.

The speed from introduction to passage — seven weeks, with no substantive hearings — effectively precluded expert examination of the legislation’s regressive core, its special interest provisions and the long-term penalties it imposes on the working poor and middle class through the use of an alternative measure of inflation — the “chained CPI.”

Only last Friday, when the legislation came out of conference committee and was no longer subject to amendment — and when decisive majorities of House and Senate Republicans had publicly committed to vote for the legislation — did experts and journalists begin to fully catch up with its defects.
One of the problems that just surfaced: Why Trump Won't Be Signing His Tax Cuts Right Away - The Atlantic. Yet another huge lie....
Quote:
The reason for the possible delay involves a complicated bit of legislative gamesmanship. Under a 2010 “pay-as-you-go” law requiring Congress to offset any new spending or lower taxes, the $1.5 trillion bill would trigger automatic cuts to Medicare and other programs—across-the-board reductions that Republicans don’t want to be responsible for letting take effect. By waiting until the calendar turns to 2018 to formally enact the tax bill, Trump would push the automatic spending cuts to 2019 and buy Congress another year to waive them.


Americans brace for fallout from GOP tax bill; corporations happy - TRMS.
_________________________
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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#304555 - 12/21/17 07:41 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: NW Ponderer]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1794
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
First, it would be absolutely great if the voters came out and removed all republicans from congress but I don't see that happening. The Moore thing is a good example of why it won't. Moore was, to put it mildly, quite possibly the worst political candidate of a generation. On top of that every black athlete and politician went down there to get out the black vote and stop Moore too. The Dems also actually outspent the Republicans in that race. There is more than that but, I think, my point is made. In spite of all that this was not exactly a runaway election. The voters on the right will stick with Trump through thick and thin and, I think, that holds true of the rest of the extremists too. The Left has been crowing about how they are going to win everything, I am not sure that is going to happen. For starters I would also expect those on the far left will run their own candidate thereby splitting the vote of the Left.

Remember too that the Republicans do an absolutely great job of scaring people to death, demonizing, lying and they have the bucks to do just that (especially after the taking care of their donor case with their whiz bang giveaway to them). Anyway, its fun to think about actually being able to deal with stuff but the reality is that its not going to be all that easy. The Republican party, for instance, after all their cries, whines, and moans about Trump, have gone over to that dark side with some vigor. Add to that the simple fact that while they have put off dropping the middle class cuts for 8 years thereby allowing their followers to love the tax cut. Unfortunately it would seem that voters don't spend a lot of time on anything but the present. They won't be happy in 8 years but the Right will deal with that when the time comes (they are also really expert in "dealing with it later").

I get a pile of emails, everyday, from the Left. The problem is that they are all about me giving them money. There is a lot of late Trump, hate the tax cut, stuff, etc. I have yet to read one that has any kind of plan and no explanation as to how they are going to beat the Right, etc. I would love it if they had a plan and would really love it if they could replace every one on the Right but ..............

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#304558 - 12/21/17 09:37 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: jgw]
rporter314 Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/18/03
Posts: 6284
Loc: Highlands, Tx
Quote:
Moore was, to put it mildly, quite possibly the worst political candidate of a generation.

Unfortunately that would be your opinion and not that of the many ultra conservatives. populists and nativists out there in Trumpland. J Moore represents the base. Most of the elected nuts maintain politically correct pubic presence, thus they are not on the record as being against Muslims, gays, etc, one can infer based on what they do say what they really believe (and do not pay attention to their lame, I did not say those words, excuse). I suspect we are in for Moore (pun intended) of the same type of candidate. After all, to listen to Republicans, Mr Trump was without a doubt the worst Republican candidate, and exhibited numerous faults which would have impacted all but a narcissist, and the country judged him to be worthy of the presidency.
_________________________
ignorance is the enemy
without equality there is no liberty

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#304711 - 12/29/17 07:42 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: rporter314]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 15681
I put a lengthy post in the "Worst Case Scenario" thread, that maybe should have gone here, but I'm going to leave it there for now. I want to expand a little, though, on just how terrible, horrible, no good, very bad this tax fraud is going to be.

"Capital" in the United States is grossly undertaxed. Capital, in this case, includes physical and financial capital.

Physical capital is primarily the nuts and bolts activity of companies - factories, materiel, computers, etc. Most of this stuff is acquired with debt. When structured properly, these items can be acquired for virtually no taxes/outlay.
Quote:
about 40 percent of corporate investment is
debt-financed. Debt-financed investments are actually subsidized through the corporate tax system since interest payments
are deductible and provisions such as accelerated depreciation
allow deductions in excess of the true cost of capital.
Is U.S. Corporate Income Double - Taxed? Here's how: suppose a company wants to set up a server farm. They need $100 million in infrastructure expenses. They have a contract with IBM to provide the computer systems with a 10-year purchase plan. They then write off 10% of the value of the computers per year (depreciation) on their taxes - exactly what they are paying for them from IBM. At the end of 10 years they have written off the entire value of the computers and paid 0 taxes on the purchase (and only interest on the contract from IBM - which they can then deduct).

Financial capital is monetary equivalents - stocks, bonds, etc. Most of this (70+%) is untaxed. Is U.S. Corporate Income Double-Taxed? What's worse, most of this untaxed capital is "excess profit" (After-tax profits at all-time high): "U.S. Treasury economists estimate the fraction of the corporate tax base that is excess profits (above the risk-free rate of return) is about 75 percent." Does Taxing U.S. Corporations Make Sense in a Global Economy? EconoFact. Most of this is held in the form of stocks, much of it in tax-deferred accounts (think 401(k)s).

Add on top of this that the "capital gains" rate is well below the "income tax" rate, and the Treasury is getting royally screwed on collecting tax on legitimate income. Most financial companies structure salaries as "pass through" capital gains, rather than wages (think Mitt Romney, Goldman Sachs). Most of those who are in the top 1% of the income class get almost none of that in the form of "salary" subject to the full income tax. When one understands how skewed the current tax system is toward the "investor class" rather than the "working class" (those that earn most of their income in wages rather than investments), it becomes overwhelmingly obvious just how bad this tax cut process is to the working stiffs of America.

You will often hear right-wing economists (which is most of them) alleging that "corporate profits get taxed twice". This is one of the grossest lies of all in this grossly mendacious discussion. The reality is that most corporate profits (other than small mom-and-pop operations) never get taxed at all. Those that do get taxed at far lower rates than a middle-class bread winner. This tax bill just made that situation substantially worse.
_________________________
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

Top
#304713 - 12/29/17 08:02 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: NW Ponderer]
jgw Offline
member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 1794
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
Taxes are interesting and our current system is a fraud, pure and simple. Somehow we have forgotten that taxes are, basically, to pay the bills, no more no less. When established it think it was something like 8 pages long, now its something like 70,000 which includes the latest "tax cut" which was, again, another fraud. The left salted it with good works and social engineering, and the right salted it with things that they needed so that they could "provide jobs"

In the 1950's, for instance, that mythic time when America was "great" the very rich got to pay 85% in taxes and yet, if you listen carefully, this was the best time America ever had. Everybody was happy, there was no crime, gov functioned, women knew their place, no homeless, and schools taught kids all the right stuff in the right way (I could go on but .....) That was also a time of limited amendments to taxes but it was already growing.

This latest thing is just offensive. For instance, the corporate tax rate. Gov tells us that the actual tax rate, paid by corporation is somewhere between 14 and 16 percent. This latest trope will take that down to somewhere around 10 to 12 percent (they didn't remove any of the various amendments designed to help the overtaxed).

We REALLY need a simple tax plan that pays the bills, that is simple and graduated so that them that got more get to pay more for the privilege of living here and doing business here.

Just saying..............

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#304720 - 12/30/17 07:58 PM Re: Big Lies and Tax Cuts [Re: jgw]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 15681
Although I've made this argument before, I'll state it again: There is no tax or economic reason for distinguishing between types of income, and all should be taxed at the same, progressive, rate. In fact, the current tax structure distorts the economy in specific and detrimental ways. For example: structuring pay to avoid wage taxes.
Quote:
The often-fuzzy line between income from capital and labour means a large gap in relative tax rates breeds tax avoidance. When wage taxes are high and capital taxes are low, firms simply shift compensation from salaries to stock options and dividends, cutting revenue without boosting growth. All told, capital-tax rates as high or higher than those on labour may make sense,
Zero-sum debate - The Economist. (Emphasis mine) Considerable effort by lawyers and accountants goes into tax avoidance, which is a completely economically worthless activity.

Moreover, there is almost no evidence that higher taxes on higher income has a negative effect on the economy at all. In fact, there is a growing body of evidence (Evidence?! We don't need not steenkin' evidence!) that these back and forth changes on the tax rates discourages investment and savings.
Quote:
[R]ising inequality is a destabilising political force, which may encourage future governments to expropriate wealth through heavy taxation. That threat could discourage saving and investment now, something a weak economy cannot afford. Paradoxically, a progressive tax on capital in the present may lead to more investment by keeping inequality in check and by convincing firms that their wealth is (mostly) safe over the long term.
That $3 trillion in cash that American corporations parked overseas was not invested, but hidden there because multinational corporations anticipated that tax rates might be lowered in the future like they were in 2004. So for over a decade that money has been withheld from the economy and stunted growth at the very time it was needed.

The solution is simple: a graduated tax on all income with limited deductions. Capital, wages, dividends, inheritance. Tax it all the same way and at the same rate. If on day 365 you have more money than you did on day one, it gets taxed, period. That will discourage artificial manipulation of the economy to get tax advantages and will not inhibit investment or savings at all. All transfers of wealth get taxed the same.
_________________________
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

Top
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