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  1. #46
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    I generally tend to agree with what smoked trout is saying, however i believe that the main problem is not the government, so much as the society that spawned the government. Our society is so beholden to the ideals of capitalism that no one really cares about their fellow man. Instead of wisely using the tax money that we give to the government for programs that are needed, Our pols use the tax money to further their own personal agendas. Just to get into power in America these days, A person needs to compromise so many of their beliefs to corportations that give them money, that when they get into office, they are mere pawns to the companies. The tax cuts that bush and congress passed into power would not have actually done very much to balance the budget. I believe that it was some thing like $40 billion, which would have paid for about two weeks of our defiects. If we required that companies that do business in America have head quarters in America, instead of having their "head quarters" as a P.O box in the virgin islands, then we would be much further towards cutting the deficet.

    Social Secruity IS a nessiary part of our gov't budget, and not just for those who are dissabled and have no pensions. The money that social security gives (a pittance, sure) helps old people buy their nessairy goods, and if we did as myv65 said, and invested our money into stocks, what would everyone do after the stock market crashed in March 2000? A whole bunch of people would be out of their retirement monies, or at least have been dealt a severe set back. I would not like to have the money i've been setting aside for my retirement being controled by the wiles of the stock market, which is dominated by people wanting to profit off of other people. I suppose that unforetunately this is impossible, due to the fact that assorted pension, 401k, etc is at least in part controled by the compaines that don't give a crap about the people that worked for them...

    The only real problem i have with what smoked trout said, is that the average american is hard working. LOL most of your 9-5 office workers spend most at least SOME of the day looking at the latest deals on E-bay and I believe that the average ammount of time per office worker that is spent on e-mail is over 90 minutes per day, and i don't think that they are trading that many work related e-mails with their co-workers... Our whole society is Fscked up and I really don't know how to change it...
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  2. #47
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    Originally posted by l3p3r_M355i4h on 04-15-2004 at 09:45 AM
    Social Secruity IS a nessiary part of our gov't budget, and not just for those who are dissabled and have no pensions. The money that social security gives (a pittance, sure) helps old people buy their nessairy goods, and if we did as myv65 said, and invested our money into stocks, what would everyone do after the stock market crashed in March 2000? A whole bunch of people would be out of their retirement monies, or at least have been dealt a severe set back.
    Well, I'll answer this part. As it happens, the company I worked for prior to this one folded around that time. So I had a 401K where the crash coincided with the end of my contributions to my 401K. I've got the money spread between varied funds and a few select stocks. During the deepest depths of the stock market "correction", that account was down just over 40%. It is now down ~10% from its peak. All this transpired in the course of ~4 years.

    Specifically to your question I would make two points. First, despite the ups and downs the stock market has historically blown away the "return" of Social Security. Second, as retirement nears it is logical to shift away from risk in exchange for a lower, and sometimes guaranteed return. True, not all are like SS as many funds are not federally insured. Even lower risk/return (and insured) are banks, then there's T-bills, etc.

    As things stand today, in excess of 12% of gross salary goes into SS, half paid by the employee and half by the employer. This is roughly the same I contribute to my 401K. Wanna guess which one I'm banking on the fund my retirement? At "typical" returns, I'll outpace SS to the tune of at least four-to-one.

    Clearly we can not shift all money into private accounts as we have an obligation to pay benefits to retirees and workers who have "done their time" paying into SS. Clearly SS will not survive if it continues to operate in its present form.

    The only way to fund retirement without requiring huge cash infusions is to obtain a better return on investment.

    This is something that SS has never done and will never do.

    What I would strongly suggest is a new system whereby we have the option of giving up our future SS payments in exchange for placing a portion of our SS deductions into a private account. I've paid into SS for 20 years and have no qualms saying I would give up every single cent owed me if I was allowed to place 1/2 of my current deductions into a private account. The other half would continue going to SS to fund retirees and those not wishing to opt out.

    Bush has suggested something along these lines, but SS is as close to a sacred cow as there is in DC. In the meantime, each President and each Congress seems content to "let the next guy worry about it". We've known for at least two decades that SS was headed for future trouble, yet to this day nothing substantial has been changed.

  3. #48
    Joined
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    myrtle beach,south carolina, U. S. of A.!
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    i really wish more people would get involved with www.fairtax.org

    social security would be fully funded by the tax, no contributions required from you or your employer.....

    also, regarding the regressive nature of taxation regarding the poor...........


    The Poor Generally the working poor pay very little (if any) income tax. However everybody needs to consume to survive. The poor get hit twice under such a scheme. Currently the poor pay little tax, where now they'll have to pay taxes on their consumption, so their total tax bill will rise dramatically. The poor also spend a larger proportion of their income on consumption goods to survive, so they'll pay a larger percentage of their income in taxes than wealthier individuals. The FairTax advocates realize this, so their plan includes sending each American family a rebate or "pre-bate" check each month to cover the necessities of life. The size of the checks will be designed so that a family right at the poverty line would not pay a cent in taxes..
    oh, did i mention no corporate income taxes? imagine the companies trying to relocate to the united states from around the world, how many jobs would be created, and in the end, how much more tax revenue would be generated........ more money to for the politicians to still be able to deliver the bacon!

    i see a repeal of income tax, and an installation of a national sales tax as the only way to solve our budgett woes.

    of course, deficit spending is a no-no, except in the case of emergency (war, national disaster, weather disasters, earthquakes, etc...)

    responsible spending is the cornerstone of any economic plan in my book!
    Last edited by thelmores; 04-15-2004 at 12:46 PM.

  4. #49
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    Originally posted by mostholycerebus on 04-15-2004 at 12:28 AM
    After that post, i'm writing in smoked trout '04!
    lol, no thanks I already have a job I love, and I'd hate to have to go to D.C. to live. I will, however, help build a bunkhouse for congress!

    i see a repeal of income tax, and an installation of a national sales tax as the only way to solve our budgett woes.
    That scares the heck out of me. Especially living in a state that has no general sales tax, and doesn't want a general sales tax. A national sales tax would be an administrative nightmare, and sales taxes are one of the most costly in terms of administrative costs. Further, I don't think any state has enacted a sales tax and not raised it in subsequent years. What is California's now, 8%? Add another 5% or more on for a federal sales tax and people would buy a lot less stuff.

    Lets just get the responsible spending thing going, then worry about tax structure. We've been dicking with the tax structure for years but have not controlled spending. And while I don't mind an occassional deficit when needed, consecutive record deficits are really starting to get to me.
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  5. #50
    Joined
    Mar 2002
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    1,074
    Originally posted by smoked trout on 04-13-2004 at 02:29 PM
    So what does one do? Vote for Bush and your incumbent representatives and expect the spending to stop? Vote for Kerry & Co and expect the spending to stop, or even worse pay more AND spend more?
    I'll tell you what. And this may blow some people's socks off (if they pay attention and give a crap what I think)...

    I am frankly not interested in the Bush administration's little morality plays. Howard Stern for one, and the Ashcroft war on pornography for another. Bush IS in the pocket of the religious right and that pi$$es me off. Ashcroft characterizes pornography as "invading our homes". Trouble is, John, it's not "invading", it's being invited, to the tune of $8 to $10 Billion a year.

    The most legitimate and workeable solution to the fiscal problems presented by a republican controlled House, Senate, and White House, is to put different parties in control. Hello John Kerry, Democrat. Have fun working with the Republican controlled congress. Meanwhile the religious right can go stuff it up their A$$.

  6. #51
    Joined
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    1,074
    Originally posted by bk94si on 04-13-2004 at 05:20 PM
    I disagree on this. I personally favor a flat tax and the current property tax system with no sales tax but here goes. Sales tax is regressive because a poor person spends virtually all their money and so pay tax on a higher percentage of their income. A rich person normally saves more. Poorer folk pay more of a percentage of their income in property taxes (if they own property) because they probably stretch just to buy a house in the first place, whereas a rich person probably is not stretching as far to buy a house in the first place. Note these are generalizations since a truly "poor" person can't buy a house.
    Nonsense. As if rich people put their extra cash under the matress. "Poor" people pay sales tax on goods they purchase and consume. GONE. Rich people do the same, and moreso because they can afford to buy more. But with the excess they I-N-V-E-S-T. That money G-R-O-W-S. It's BETTER than a tax because it creates MORE wealth. Which is why republicans would like to tax them LESS so that more of their money is available to GROW the economy.

  7. #52
    Joined
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    Montana
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    Originally posted by deadrody on 04-15-2004 at 01:25 PM
    I'll tell you what. And this may blow some people's socks off (if they pay attention and give a crap what I think)...

    I am frankly not interested in the Bush administration's little morality plays. Howard Stern for one, and the Ashcroft war on pornography for another. Bush IS in the pocket of the religious right and that pi$$es me off. Ashcroft characterizes pornography as "invading our homes". Trouble is, John, it's not "invading", it's being invited, to the tune of $8 to $10 Billion a year.

    The most legitimate and workeable solution to the fiscal problems presented by a republican controlled House, Senate, and White House, is to put different parties in control. Hello John Kerry, Democrat. Have fun working with the Republican controlled congress. Meanwhile the religious right can go stuff it up their A$$.
    Perhaps. Losing the white house may cause a republican congress to go back to ole Newt Gingrich's ways. Perhaps. But I don't see Kerry or Bush talking about reducing spending.

    My state will most likely hand its meager electoral college votes to Bush. This gives me the freedom to vote for whoever I choose. I will be watching the Libertarians closely, the American Party can go stuff it (more religious right than Bush!), the Green Party is clueless, the Reform Party I will also watch closely. And any independant I will attempt to learn more about. Bush & Kerry just seem too fiscally similar in terms of the size of our government to me to EARN my vote.

    deadrody, you seem like a good fit for Libertarians. Their stance on Iraq may dissuade you however.
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  8. #53
    Joined
    Jul 2001
    Location
    USA
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    364
    Originally posted by thelmores on 04-15-2004 at 09:38 AM
    i really wish more people would get involved with www.fairtax.org
    God, please, think for once.

    Who would benefit most from this proposed tax plan? Who would benefit most from getting rid a progressive tax and replacing it with a regressive one? Ding Ding! The rich. What a concept. The conservative Cato Institute comes up with a tax plan that would most favor their rich conservative backers.

    Regressive taxes don't just affect the poor, they affect everyone. It does not matter that the poor would get a "pre-bate check." Just ignore that for a moment. Consider all of those above the poverty line who would not get that check. It is a somewhat abstract concept but you have to visualize this: as you go from individual to individual up the pay scale, the richer the person is, the less and less they are affected by a sales tax, because the percentage that that tax would represent of one's income would get smaller and smaller. To put it another way: Person X has a $1,000,000/year income. Person Y has a $100,000/year income. A $10 tax on some item is a much smaller proportion of X's income than it is of Y's income. This is why basing a tax system solely on a regressive tax is flawed and would mostly benefit the people at the top to the detriment of those below.

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