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Why the US declines? Solutions?

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pinguin View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2011 at 09:57
Then, I am afraid it is "Game over".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2011 at 10:27
The game is only over when the player gets up to leave. We aren't there yet. Just a lot of frustrated bickering over finances.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2011 at 10:48
I do not think the situation is that bad. Even without cuts and dollar devaluation, 12 trln can be repaid in 15 years paying some 800 bln  a year. Rising taxes by 8% will give the required cash, considering that total annual income of Americans is about 10 bln a year.  Moreover, increasing taxation of petrol by $1 a liter will give additiona $600 bln a year. USA can also intensify oil and gas production and get hundreds of billions from this. Finally, if I am not mistaken, there was a situation in 60s - 70s when American debt was 100% of GDP and there was no decline of the United States :)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2011 at 11:17
"What people argue about is income tax. Rich people pay less of their income in taxes than poor people, that is a fact. If the rich are to pay the exact same rate (let alone the 1960s rates) most of the budgetary problems will be solved.
 
Al-Jassas"
 
And Al, just what do you tend to denote the income number of the "poor?"  I would certainly like to see your "fact?"
 
To borrow a term "the real fact " is that the so called poor in the USA, pay no income tax at all!  In fact, most of them get a "income tax" credit!  That is they receive (as a refund) all of the small amount of income tax that is with-held over the tax year, plus a "premimum!"  In other words they mostly exist within the "negative Income Tax" area!
 
So, just how you could make the statement you did is beyond me!
 
Perhaps you were merely confused with the tax schedules, etc.?
 
Regards,
 
Ron
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2011 at 11:49
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:

The game is only over when the player gets up to leave. We aren't there yet. Just a lot of frustrated bickering over finances.


Yes, some countries continue to live for centuries on past glories, even when the pocket can't finance the pride anymore.


Edited by pinguin - 25 Feb 2011 at 11:49
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Feb 2011 at 11:51
Originally posted by Anton Anton wrote:

I do not think the situation is that bad. Even without cuts and dollar devaluation, 12 trln can be repaid in 15 years paying some 800 bln  a year. Rising taxes by 8% will give the required cash, considering that total annual income of Americans is about 10 bln a year.  Moreover, increasing taxation of petrol by $1 a liter will give additiona $600 bln a year. USA can also intensify oil and gas production and get hundreds of billions from this. Finally, if I am not mistaken, there was a situation in 60s - 70s when American debt was 100% of GDP and there was no decline of the United States :)


Indeed, but that could happen in countries that realize they are in economical trouble, and take measures to fix it. Don't expect the budget is going to decrease authomatically. Americans don't see the problem so there is no way they take measures to fix it.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 01:33
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

"What people argue about is income tax. Rich people pay less of their income in taxes than poor people, that is a fact. If the rich are to pay the exact same rate (let alone the 1960s rates) most of the budgetary problems will be solved.
 
Al-Jassas"
 
And Al, just what do you tend to denote the income number of the "poor?"  I would certainly like to see your "fact?"
What on earth is 'income number' supposed to mean? Al Jassas said nothing about an 'income number'.
Quote
To borrow a term "the real fact " is that the so called poor in the USA, pay no income tax at all!  In fact, most of them get a "income tax" credit!  That is they receive (as a refund) all of the small amount of income tax that is with-held over the tax year, plus a "premimum!"  In other words they mostly exist within the "negative Income Tax" area!
 
So, just how you could make the statement you did is beyond me!
You don't seem to have read what al Jassas wrote. He said:
(a) what people argue about is income tax. That happens to be a true statement, whether the people are correct to do so or not.
(b) The rich pay less of their income in taxes than the poor do. He did not say 'pay less income tax' which you seem for some reason to have assumed, presumably because you had a knee-jerk answer to hand in your propaganda sheet.
 
It is correct that the rich pay less of their income in taxes, because most of the taxes paid by poor people are paid by their employer (through, e.g. payroll tax) or in the form of excises like sales and property taxes and the like, which all acount for a far lower percentage of rich people's income that poor ones.
Quote  
Perhaps you were merely confused with the tax schedules, etc.?
At least he was paying attention.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 01:42
No-one is going to get anywhere as long as transfer payments are seen as 'government expenditure'. It is a reasonable goal to reduce actual expenditure on government by increasing efficiency, but a far different thing to cut output or the transfer of money from one set of people to another.
 
It's worth noting how much of actual government expenditure (which does not include things like social security or what for wome reason are dismissed by some people as 'entitlements') actually goes on subsidies to companies and, in particular, banks.
 
At this point of course there are valid reasons for not wanting to raise taxes, expecially on those hard-hit by the slump, but much of the whole problem derives from the inadequate taxes that the US has been paying for a generation and more, resulting in the deterioration in education, infrastructure, law and order and all the other government activities that have steadily been cut back and that people now complain about.
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 01:49
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:






That's what I mean by confusing government expenditure with transfer payments. If the government takes a dollar from X and gives it to Y than the government hasn't spent that money: it's still around.
 
Of course at a deeper level it needs to be understood that money spent hasn't gone away or disappeared ionto some oblivion. Money spent has merely been ransferred from one person's (or companie's) pocket to another one, ready to finance another transaction somewhere else. Of course it can be saved, which deprives it of any use, but it still sits around, usually steadily losing value.
 
But the idea that money can be exhausted isn't one that's easy to put over even in economics classes. It'll certainly take more than a few Nobel prize winners.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 01:54
Originally posted by Anton Anton wrote:

I do not think the situation is that bad. Even without cuts and dollar devaluation, 12 trln can be repaid in 15 years paying some 800 bln  a year. Rising taxes by 8% will give the required cash, considering that total annual income of Americans is about 10 bln a year.  Moreover, increasing taxation of petrol by $1 a liter will give additiona $600 bln a year. USA can also intensify oil and gas production and get hundreds of billions from this. Finally, if I am not mistaken, there was a situation in 60s - 70s when American debt was 100% of GDP and there was no decline of the United States :)
Without stopping to checkout the figures, which seem reasonable enough, you're in general right. Proper policies could revive the US economy even if it would be difficult to regain former dominance.
 
How likely however are any of those things to come to pass, given the likelihood that the next administration will be like this one, whether waving a Democrat or a Republican flag?
 
As a matter of fact UK debt is currently over 300% of GDP but it's safely long-term and the economy is stronger than the US, though not as strong as north-western continental Europe.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 02:25
How do we call this trend in Britain, the U.S. and other western countries? What about this: The "Argentinazing" of the West... Shocked




Edited by pinguin - 26 Feb 2011 at 02:26
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 03:45
I've always been fascinated by the perverse desires among some quack heads about their readiness to proclaim Columbia difuntis est premised simply on the internal political dialogue of the Americans themselves. Why our resident squawker, the flightless wonder, even drags in sheet music from the early 20th century, and extends the doom talk to cover Western Civilization implying the end of the world is near. The fact that all eyes are on Washington should give a strong hint that the yammering about decline is but self-induced wishes bespeaking suicide. For a Chilean to glory in the "falling dollar" only emphasizes this distension as a projection of an old saw: cutting one's nose off to spite one's face. Just recently, the Chilean Senate went on record in criticism of President Pinera and the head of the Chilean Central Bank--Jose de Gregorio--for not properly considering the reality of the dollar in Chile's economy with respect to the nation's agrarian sector for the sake of showy "development" on international markets with respect to the mining industry. They reminded Pinera that he campaigned on the promise of supporting a sound dollar since such was critical to the flow of capital within Chile, something that the mining industry does not provide since the capital it generates is normally recycled outside of Chile itself (you know those nasty multi-natioanls and their profits). Selling copper to China at US$4 a pound does not represent the translation of this sum into the Chilean economy, certainly not to the degree that agricultural production for export to the United States does. Gregorio, of course, responded by claiming that the Chilean eoconomy will supposedly "grow" from about 5 to 7% during 2011 while keeping mum over the upturn in inflation into the third percentile from the negative levels it achieved in January of 2010.
 
Compare the commentary:
 
 
Now on this thread we've read a lot of carping over taxes, budgets, and "weak" dollars imagining a U. S. bankruptcy. The truth here is the debate is an old one and actually focuses on the byzantine nature of US Tax Code that more or less has become an elephant designed by a comittee. Neverthless, given the realities of GDP one might fashion whatever argument one wishes premised upon the ubiquity of the US$ on international markets. To engage in that game one can fool with the data here:
 
 
My question for the venturesome: What is the difference between "welfare" expenditures and "pensions"?


Edited by drgonzaga - 26 Feb 2011 at 06:34
Honi soit qui mal y pense
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 04:48
Nothing really, from an economic point of view. They both represent transfer payments from those who pay more taxes to those who pay less. Ignoring moral considerations, in a depressed economy transfer payments act to reduce saving and increase spending, which are required to boost (or maintain) monetary demand, thus putting a brake on deflation. In a booming economy they act to put a brake on the boom, thus lessening the impact of both downturns and upturns.
 
They also from a political point of view act as a negative feedback mechanism, lessening the normal accumulation of wealth in ever fewer hands that is typical of unrestricted capitalism, thereby contributing to peaceful inter-class relations and lessening the danger of revolutions or uprisings like those we are seeing currently in the middle east.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 05:01
Hello to you all
 
Thanks for Graham for explaining what I was saying. Warren Buffet if I am not mistaken pays around 17% of his income as taxes while the combined federal (forget state) taxes are around 30%. The average income taxes payed by the top 400 taxpayers is around 16%:
 
This is the problem with the US. Rich people pay less rates than lower income people squeezing the lower income people and damaging the economy. A fairer tax system will cancel all that.
 
Al-Jassas
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pikeshot1600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 05:32
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Hello to you all
 
Thanks for Graham for explaining what I was saying. Warren Buffet if I am not mistaken pays around 17% of his income as taxes while the combined federal (forget state) taxes are around 30%. The average income taxes payed by the top 400 taxpayers is around 16%:
 
This is the problem with the US. Rich people pay less rates than lower income people squeezing the lower income people and damaging the economy. A fairer tax system will cancel all that.
 
Al-Jassas
 
 


Al, as long as the political aristocracy are disproportionately multi-millionaires paying 16%, it ain't gonna happen.




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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 05:39
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

I've always been fascinated by the perverse desires among some quack heads about their readiness to proclaim Columbia difuntis est premised simply on the internal political dialogue of the Americans themselves. Why our resident squawker, the flightless wonder, even drags in sheet music from the early 20th century, and extends the doom talk to cover Western Civilization implying the end of the world is near. The fact that all eyes are on Washington should give a strong hint that the yammering about decline is but self-induced wishes bespeaking suicide. For a Chilean to glory in the "falling dollar" only emphasizes this distension as a projection of an old saw: cutting one's nose off to spite one's face. Just recently, the Chilen Senate went on record in criticism of President Pinera and the head of the Chilean Central Bank--Jose de Gregorio--for not properly considering the reality of the dollar in Chile's econ....

(And thousands of more BS LOL)



Do you think Spain is following the same Argentinazing tendency? I would bet on it.

For South America, if the U.S. sunk, it will produce some troubles, indeed. But we aren't in the 60s anymore. We will survive very well, giving our trade is not monopolized by that country anymore.

Listen "Cambalache" LOL



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 06:51

Wake up and smell the coffee, Penguin, and rely on the factual rather than the histrionics of the 1930s as repeated by the likes of their current representatives such as Hugo Chavez and his ilk. The notion that the US "monopolized" the trade of Latin America has nothing to do with anything conspiratorial and is premised simply on economic market realities that have changed little either from a historical perspective or in terms of the present generation. See the historical stats here:

 
As for Chile--
 
Argentina:
 
Brazil:
 
Mexico:
 
Canada:
 
Now explain the reality of the latter two when juxtaposed to the others...
 
No need to invoke the ghost of Enrique Santos Discepolo that so disturbed your Argentine friends in '76:
 
Cambalache (closing stanza)
 
Siglo veinte, cambalache
problematico y febril!
El que no llora, no mama,
y el que no afana es un gil.
Dale nomas! Dale que va!
Que alla en el horno
nos vamo a encontrar!
No pienses mas,
sentate a un lao.
Que a nadie importa
si naciste honrao.
Que es lo mismo el que labura
noche y dia, como un buey
que el que vive de los otros,
que el que mata o el que cura
o esta fuera de la ley.
 
English translation:
Twentieth century, bazaar
problematic and feverish!
If you don't cry you don't get fed
and if you don't steal you're a stupid.
Go ahead! Keep it up!
That there, in hell
we're gonna reunite.
Don't think anymore,
move out of the way.
Nobody seems to care
if you were born honest.
It's the same the one who works,
day and night like an ox,
than the one who lives from the others,
than the one that kills or heals
or than the one who lives outside the law.
 
The populismo of the 1930s is as disconnected today as it was then since it's only product was the personalismo of the tyrants.


Edited by drgonzaga - 26 Feb 2011 at 14:53
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 08:31
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

"What people argue about is income tax. Rich people pay less of their income in taxes than poor people, that is a fact. If the rich are to pay the exact same rate (let alone the 1960s rates) most of the budgetary problems will be solved.
 
Al-Jassas"
 
And Al, just what do you tend to denote the income number of the "poor?"  I would certainly like to see your "fact?"
What on earth is 'income number' supposed to mean? Al Jassas said nothing about an 'income number'.
 
Income number seems to indicate a number in $US, that is subject to taxes!  Very simple!
 
Quote
To borrow a term "the real fact " is that the so called poor in the USA, pay no income tax at all!  In fact, most of them get a "income tax" credit!  That is they receive (as a refund) all of the small amount of income tax that is with-held over the tax year, plus a "premimum!"  In other words they mostly exist within the "negative Income Tax" area!
 
So, just how you could make the statement you did is beyond me!
You don't seem to have read what al Jassas wrote. He said:
(a) what people argue about is income tax. That happens to be a true statement, whether the people are correct to do so or not.
(b) The rich pay less of their income in taxes than the poor do. He did not say 'pay less income tax' which you seem for some reason to have assumed, presumably because you had a knee-jerk answer to hand in your propaganda sheet."
 
The above is merely word-play of the worse kind!  The so called "poor" in America, pay "no income tax!", zed, nada, zip, etc.!  Instead they receive an "Earned Income Tax Credit!"  Perhaps you and your friends have never heard of it? 
 
It is correct that the rich pay less of their income in taxes, because most of the taxes paid by poor people are paid by their employer (through, e.g. payroll tax) or in the form of excises like sales and property taxes and the like, which all acount for a far lower percentage of rich people's income that poor ones.
Quote  
 
But, perhaps you are tending to confuse "total taxes", without excluding "Income Taxes!"
 
Perhaps you were merely confused with the tax schedules, etc.?
 
At least he was paying attention.
I doubt it, as I doubt you!
You mention "payroll taxes" which I assume you tend to mean "social security taxes", etc., as well as taxes in the form of "excise" or "Sales" taxes etc., which is far removed from "income taxes!"
 
You both should well just mention "total taxes" paid, rather than "income!"  That is where your arguements fall upon thier face!
 
If there is an unfair "tax" (if one wants to call Social Security as a tax) then you enter a differing world!
 
Of course the Social Security deductions, hit the lower classes in a much higher degree than the upper ones, since Congress, in its stupidity, has for ever placed an upper limit upon the amount of "earned income" that is to be subjected to the "Social Security", dedution!  Note, I do not call it a "tax", since every one who sees this number of dollars deducted from their pay-check, do expect to get it all back when they retire, or become disabled, etc.!  However when the limit of income subject to such deductions is reached, then no more deductions are made!
 
I call it lunacy, but you might well call it something else?  After a certain point, I feel the "deduction" or "tax" if you want to call it that, should not have any limit!  But, I also believe in a "Means test" before any of these deductutible amounts shoud be returned to the payer!
 
It should well then become merely a form of "Noblis Oblige'!"
 
I shall stop now, since I believe I have made my point!


Edited by opuslola - 26 Feb 2011 at 08:43
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 08:38
Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Hello to you all
 
Thanks for Graham for explaining what I was saying. Warren Buffet if I am not mistaken pays around 17% of his income as taxes while the combined federal (forget state) taxes are around 30%. The average income taxes payed by the top 400 taxpayers is around 16%:
 
This is the problem with the US. Rich people pay less rates than lower income people squeezing the lower income people and damaging the economy. A fairer tax system will cancel all that.
 
Al-Jassas
 
 


Al, as long as the political aristocracy are disproportionately multi-millionaires paying 16%, it ain't gonna happen.




 
And isn't it the people who gave that aristocracy the power in the first place?
 
Seeing the current political landscape of the US and to a lesser extent other countries I couldn't but help noticing the similarities between today's corporate political class and the Liberals (particularly the utilitarians) who dominated european economic policies in the 1820s untill the middle of the 19th century. Should we expect a second coming for socialism/communism?
 
Al-Jassas
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 08:46
Al Jassas, I would respectfully ask that you read my post, which exists just above yours?  It seems your post reached the site before my long winded one!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 08:52
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

 
No need to invoke the ghost of Enrique Santos Discepolo that so disturbed your Argentine friends in '76:
 
...
 
The populismo of the 1930s is as disconnected today as it was then since it's only product was the personalismo of the tyrants.


Actually, I think Cambalache appies perfectly to the current situation of the U.S., Italy, Greece, Spain and some other countries of Europe, where corruption soars (Enron anyone?)...Wink

Cambalache (Flee bazaar)
 
English translation:
Twentieth century, bazaar
problematic and feverish!
If you don't cry you don't get fed
and if you don't steal you're a stupid.

Go ahead! Keep it up!
That there, in hell
we're gonna reunite.
Don't think anymore,
move out of the way.
Nobody seems to care
if you were born honest.
It's the same the one who works,
day and night like an ox,
than the one who lives from the others,
than the one that kills or heals
or than the one who lives outside the law.



Edited by pinguin - 26 Feb 2011 at 08:53
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 09:47
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:



For South America, if the U.S. sunk, it will produce some troubles, indeed. But we aren't in the 60s anymore. We will survive very well, giving our trade is not monopolized by that country anymore.



"Sink" is too strong word. Anyway, there is a Russian saying "While fat pines, skinny dies" Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 09:51
I expect a response from Al Jassas, at any time!  But, perhaps the answers do not readily come to  mind?
 
Regards,
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 10:12
Originally posted by Anton Anton wrote:


"Sink" is too strong word. Anyway, there is a Russian saying "While fat pines, skinny dies" Wink


Indeed. There is also a Spanish saying that says: "Quien a buen arbol se arrima buena sombra la cobija" (who snuggles up to good tree good shade shelters him)... That's an advice for skinny countries, who are already switching to better trees LOL


Edited by pinguin - 26 Feb 2011 at 10:13
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pikeshot1600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2011 at 13:01
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Hello to you all
 
Thanks for Graham for explaining what I was saying. Warren Buffet if I am not mistaken pays around 17% of his income as taxes while the combined federal (forget state) taxes are around 30%. The average income taxes payed by the top 400 taxpayers is around 16%:
 
This is the problem with the US. Rich people pay less rates than lower income people squeezing the lower income people and damaging the economy. A fairer tax system will cancel all that.
 
Al-Jassas
 
 


Al, as long as the political aristocracy are disproportionately multi-millionaires paying 16%, it ain't gonna happen.




 
And isn't it the people who gave that aristocracy the power in the first place?
 
Seeing the current political landscape of the US and to a lesser extent other countries I couldn't but help noticing the similarities between today's corporate political class and the Liberals (particularly the utilitarians) who dominated european economic policies in the 1820s untill the middle of the 19th century. Should we expect a second coming for socialism/communism?
 
Al-Jassas
 


Since political interests have come to understand the power of media (since the 1960s), money has come to dominate politics as never before that time.  Media exposure is very expensive.  The "political aristocracy" is not the same as in 1800 when the "rich; the well-born and the able" were considered the rightful arbiters of politics and power.  Now it is just who has the money.

Corporate or other established financial interests now manipulate, and in essence control, elected representatives through their influence over those representatives' financial requirements...."you want media exposure, we'll help pay for it - for a price."

Socialism seems to have discredited itself through unsustainable entitlements; communism seems to have discredited itself through the inability to do anything except to spread poverty around equally. 

Is there a "solution" to the relative decline of the US?  Probably not.  Adapting to the reality that the disproportionate allocation of prosperity that existed, 1950 - 1980/90 is over is probably the best that can be expected.  Realistically, the prosperity that was thought to exist, or that could be expected, was an historical anomaly that could never be sustained.  The return to a more usual reality of basic subsistence and to more modest expectations seems to be in order.  What that may mean for the outraged dis-entitled citizen, or the dis-enfranchised union member has yet to be determined.

The observed effects of "globalization" seem to be the leveling out of labor costs, the diminishment of working class influence, and the concentration of wealth in fewer hands.  That tends to make it easier for the wealthiest to control the "political aristocracy" by purchasing influence and access to media.  Media can be manipulated to demonize and destroy whoever the adversary of the day might be - unions; political opponents; unpopular social groups, etc.

The United States will survive as a great power, even if only in the Western Hemisphere, and the United States will continue to to be a prosperous alternative to other places to live, but not in the relative sense of 1950 to 1990.  Too many things have changed, and they are basically reverting to the longer term historical reality that existed before that period of anomaly.

          


Edited by pikeshot1600 - 26 Feb 2011 at 13:11
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Feb 2011 at 00:11
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

"What people argue about is income tax. Rich people pay less of their income in taxes than poor people, that is a fact. If the rich are to pay the exact same rate (let alone the 1960s rates) most of the budgetary problems will be solved.
 
Al-Jassas"
 
And Al, just what do you tend to denote the income number of the "poor?"  I would certainly like to see your "fact?"
What on earth is 'income number' supposed to mean? Al Jassas said nothing about an 'income number'.
 
Income number seems to indicate a number in $US, that is subject to taxes!  Very simple!
Not simple at all. Totally obscure in fact, to the extent of meaninglessness. Give an example and tell us how an 'income number' is calculated?
Quote
Quote
 
Quote
To borrow a term "the real fact " is that the so called poor in the USA, pay no income tax at all!  In fact, most of them get a "income tax" credit!  That is they receive (as a refund) all of the small amount of income tax that is with-held over the tax year, plus a "premimum!"  In other words they mostly exist within the "negative Income Tax" area!
 
So, just how you could make the statement you did is beyond me!
You don't seem to have read what al Jassas wrote. He said:
(a) what people argue about is income tax. That happens to be a true statement, whether the people are correct to do so or not.
(b) The rich pay less of their income in taxes than the poor do. He did not say 'pay less income tax' which you seem for some reason to have assumed, presumably because you had a knee-jerk answer to hand in your propaganda sheet."
 
The above is merely word-play of the worse kind!  The so called "poor" in America, pay "no income tax!", zed, nada, zip, etc.!  Instead they receive an "Earned Income Tax Credit!"  Perhaps you and your friends have never heard of it? 
Of course I've heard of it. And as I tried uselessly as usual to explain to you, 'income tax' isn't the point. Taces that are paid out of income is the point. Your view is just as idiotic as claiming that health care is free in he US because if you can't afford to pay for it don't have to.
 
And I've filled in US income tax returns for my mother-in-law, though happily I never had to for myself, so I know a fair amount about it.
 
It's you that is playing around with words trying to make a ridiulous claim that the poor don't pay taxes.
Quote  
Quote
It is correct that the rich pay less of their income in taxes, because most of the taxes paid by poor people are paid by their employer (through, e.g. payroll tax) or in the form of excises like sales and property taxes and the like, which all acount for a far lower percentage of rich people's income that poor ones.
Quote  
 
But, perhaps you are tending to confuse "total taxes", without excluding "Income Taxes!"
 
Perhaps you were merely confused with the tax schedules, etc.?
 
At least he was paying attention.
I doubt it, as I doubt you!
You mention "payroll taxes" which I assume you tend to mean "social security taxes", etc., as well as taxes in the form of "excise" or "Sales" taxes etc., which is far removed from "income taxes!"
This may surprise you, because I suppose you may live by spending accumulated capital left you by your parents or some other benefactor, but poor people - even moderately well off people - pay all their taxes out of income.
 
Shocking isn't it? Why don't they just sell their palatial villa in Acapulco and pay their taxes ofût of that instead? 
 
By 'payroll taxes' I mean taxes nominally paid by the employer (or withheld by him) on the basis of payroll. In the US you have, federally, social security taxes, unemployment taxes, Medicare, and withheld income tax. There are state versions too but I can't keep up with all of them.
 
Quote
You both should well just mention "total taxes" paid, rather than "income!"  That is where your arguements fall upon thier face!
 
If there is an unfair "tax" (if one wants to call Social Security as a tax) then you enter a differing world!
Of course it's a tax. The rest is smokescreen.
 
Quote
Of course the Social Security deductions, hit the lower classes in a much higher degree than the upper ones, since Congress, in its stupidity, has for ever placed an upper limit upon the amount of "earned income" that is to be subjected to the "Social Security", dedution!  Note, I do not call it a "tax", since every one who sees this number of dollars deducted from their pay-check, do expect to get it all back when they retire, or become disabled, etc.!  However when the limit of income subject to such deductions is reached, then no more deductions are made!
Those especting to 'get it all back' are living in a fool's world. Not really a paradise, because actually they normally get a lot more back than they pay in in terms of value. Much more than a private investment could ever return, except by an enormous fluke. That's true even in America, unless current rghtward swings lead to Social Sêcurity being privatised, which will desroty the whole system.


Edited by gcle2003 - 27 Feb 2011 at 00:36
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Feb 2011 at 00:31
Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:


Is there a "solution" to the relative decline of the US?  Probably not.  Adapting to the reality that the disproportionate allocation of prosperity that existed, 1950 - 1980/90 is over is probably the best that can be expected.  Realistically, the prosperity that was thought to exist, or that could be expected, was an historical anomaly that could never be sustained.  The return to a more usual reality of basic subsistence and to more modest expectations seems to be in order.  What that may mean for the outraged dis-entitled citizen, or the dis-enfranchised union member has yet to be determined.


Indeed. Once upon a time, the U.S. was decades ahead in development than anyone else, but the world catched up. I remember, in the 60s, when people saw the cars, houses, highways, supermarkets and domestic machines only in the American movies! Confused At those times, only rich people had telephones  at theirs homes.
If you wanted to know the future you should visit the U.S.
That's not true anymore.

Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:


The observed effects of "globalization" seem to be the leveling out of labor costs, the diminishment of working class influence, and the concentration of wealth in fewer hands.  That tends to make it easier for the wealthiest to control the "political aristocracy" by purchasing influence and access to media.  Media can be manipulated to demonize and destroy whoever the adversary of the day might be - unions; political opponents; unpopular social groups, etc.


Absolutely.

Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:


The United States will survive as a great power, even if only in the Western Hemisphere,


The U.S. should keep its role of great power where it is loved: Europe, Asia, Israel. In the Western Hemisphere the U.S. is hated and resented almost everywhere, even by those hypocryte Canadians.
Even more, the U.S. hasn't realize has yet that the only aspiration of the region is to increase its commerce and alliance with other parterns, rather than with a declining empire.

Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:


and the United States will continue to to be a prosperous alternative to other places to live, but not in the relative sense of 1950 to 1990.  Too many things have changed, and they are basically reverting to the longer term historical reality that existed before that period of anomaly.         


Notice from where the immigrants are comming now. Every year, the immigrants come from even poorer countries than the year before. With the exception of advanced research, top music and media, that country today is not the most attractive place to live, or to grow a family.



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Feb 2011 at 00:47
For once I'm don't disagree with you Pike (at least not much Smile) However...
Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:

Since political interests have come to understand the power of media (since the 1960s), money has come to dominate politics as never before that time.  Media exposure is very expensive.  The "political aristocracy" is not the same as in 1800 when the "rich; the well-born and the able" were considered the rightful arbiters of politics and power.  Now it is just who has the money.
Media exposure is not necessarily expensive, unless left to the so-called 'free' market. One of the problems the US faces, politically rather than economically, insofar as they don't overlap, is that there is not free television/radio time for political parties/candidates. Various counries around here also have free billboard exposure. The alternative, which is to cap the amount of money that can be spent on an electoral campaign, also not uncommon, is also not followed in the US. If, say, Senate candidates were limited to expenditure on campaigning of $1 million, no matter the source, there would e a considerable change in the donimance of moneyed interests in US elections.
Quote
The United States will survive as a great power, even if only in the Western Hemisphere, and the United States will continue to to be a prosperous alternative to other places to live, but not in the relative sense of 1950 to 1990. 
It needs emphasising though that it depends on what the United States does - and how far it faces up to reality.
 
 


Edited by gcle2003 - 27 Feb 2011 at 00:48
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Feb 2011 at 02:31
Obviously Graham you haven't heard about the supreme court ruling (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizens_United_v._Federal_Election_Commission) which allowed coportations to directly engage in political advertising.
 
This is tanamout to privitisation of politics itself.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pikeshot1600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Feb 2011 at 04:59
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Obviously Graham you haven't heard about the supreme court ruling (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizens_United_v._Federal_Election_Commission) which allowed coportations to directly engage in political advertising.
 
This is tanamout to privitisation of politics itself.
 
Al-Jassas


I imagine Graham is aware of the decision.  Campaign finance reform has been a political issue (albeit not a very serious one) for some time.  The Court interpreted the Constitutional intent of free speech, and in the absence of specific Federal statutes on campaign finance that might affect it, the decision is the law of the land.

Congress could do something to address that, but I am never optimistic when such action could negatively impact incumbents.  They are happy with the situation the way it is....this way they understand who their real constituents are.  Wink

 
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