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Proving That Democrats Are Actively Trying To Lose The Next Election

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12 minutes ago, SaysWho? said:

 

The counter-argument has been that they didn't "really" pay that much because of tax evasion. 

Tax avoidance and tax evasion are two different things. Tax avoidance is legal, and I've read several articles over the years that make the case that there were plenty of legal ways to avoid taxes back then. Thus the effective tax rate was much lower than 90% in part mitigating the weight of the historical evidence that is all too commonly cited for radically raising taxes and pretending nothing would happen to the economy. The burden of proof is on those wanting to radically raise taxes. The article does overreach and makes some claims that are not substantiated by the evidence that was cited, but so do the politicians making their tax case with historical evidence that is over simplified. 

 

If you want to make the case for higher marginal rates based on the 1950s USA, then you also have to advocate for legal loopholes for the rich to use to avoid paying taxes.

 

Edit: I also want to point out that there are no countries in the world today that have a statutory income tax rate of 70% of higher. There appears to be only around 11 nations with rates higher than 50%.  Jacking rates up as high as some of you want to do on this board would be an experiment with the entire economy. The burden is on you guys to show that everything would be just the same, with no negative consequences.

 

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Just now, Massdriver said:

Tax avoidance and tax evasion are two different things. Tax avoidance is legal, and I've read several articles over the years that make the case that there were plenty of legal ways to avoid taxes back then. Thus the effective tax rate was much lower than 90% in part mitigating the weight of the historical evidence that is all too commonly cited for radically raising taxes and pretending nothing would happen to the economy. The burden of proof is on those wanting to radically raise taxes. The article does overreach and makes some claims that are not substantiated by the evidence that was cited, but so do the politicians making their tax case with historical evidence that is over simplified. 

 

True, you could always find ways to avoid/deduct. But you're overstating your case. Even people who push back against it realize taxes were significantly higher on the highest earners. The rates did go as high as 90%. 

 

Even after you take into account avoidance AND evasion, there's really no argument to be made against it. They paid more. They've gamed the system now. And now populism is at a high because even if you're on the right and don't realize conservative policies lead to bad results, you still notice how many structures of the country are rigged against you. The status quo of a middle class family getting screwed if there's a medical emergency is unacceptable.

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If the end result is they pay more and have to jump through more hoops it really can't be bad.  I mean i'm assuming they have to actually do something to earn deductions, which means they'll be contributing in other ways than dumping money into markets making themselves and their friends more money.

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12 minutes ago, SaysWho? said:

 

 

True, you could always find ways to avoid/deduct. But you're overstating your case. Even people who push back against it realize taxes were significantly higher on the highest earners. The rates did go as high as 90%. 

 

Even after you take into account avoidance AND evasion, there's really no argument to be made against it. They paid more. They've gamed the system now. And now populism is at a high because even if you're on the right and don't realize conservative policies lead to bad results, you still notice how many structures of the country are rigged against you. The status quo of a middle class family getting screwed if there's a medical emergency is unacceptable.

The rates on paper weren't paid. Don't you see? The effective rates weren't much higher than what the rates are today. Thus, when you use that as evidence that the economy will be just fine, it is fallacious. There is a high amount of uncertainty on what will happen if you jack up rates to 90%. My guess is it wouldn't be as great as all of you seem to think. But I'm in luck. Pelosi is a capitalist and she knows this. She knows much more than Cortez does about economic literature (yes I'm aware of her degree), etc. She will likely allow them to have some sort of voice, but she will sideline the more radical proposals because they are dangerous for the Democratic Party and the nation.

 

As for the middle class, I agree that we need universal healthcare. I agree with helping the poor and middle class more. I can be for those things without resorting to 90% income tax rates.

 

Edit: I've also read Krugman's article. There are other economists out there that don't agree with Krugman or the economists he cited to make it seem as if there is a consensus that 70% is the optimal rate of taxation. From what I can tell, there is no consensus of any kind and he is misrepresenting the facts. There are arguments all over the place on the optimal level of taxation, and citing one recent paper doesn't change that.

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1 minute ago, PaladinSolo said:

If the end result is they pay more and have to jump through more hoops it really can't be bad.

 

If the end result is they have less to control all the wealth and that their failure doesn't necessarily mean we're fucked since 11 men won't control half the economy, then I'll be thrilled. We already went through that in 2008.

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Oh and by the way, if you want to reduce carbon emissions, here's an idea that does have a consensus in economics. You fucking tax carbon and pay the revenue back to the people. You don't tax the rich and pay for green pet projects. Tax carbon, increase the rate each year until we are completely off of it. The market gets to decide what sources of non carbon win, not Congress.

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Don't look at me: I'm not suggesting in the least that my harsh marginal rate is to pay for green projects.

 

My rate is pretty much intended to make the piggies at the trough squeal a little bit.

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My skepticism for super high rates isn't because I love fat cats or anything. I love this country. I'm sincerely concerned that proposals like that would do a lot more harm to the economy than people here seem to think. At the very least, it is highly uncertain what would happen, and that's a big risk to take given the stakes. It could result in economic stagnation or innovation drastically slowing down. We can help the middle class and poor without resorting to such risky policy making.

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1 hour ago, Massdriver said:

My skepticism for super high rates isn't because I love fat cats or anything. I love this country. I'm sincerely concerned that proposals like that would do a lot more harm to the economy than people here seem to think. At the very least, it is highly uncertain what would happen, and that's a big risk to take given the stakes. It could result in economic stagnation or innovation drastically slowing down. We can help with middle class and poor without resorting to such risky policy making.

But that's what makes it fun and exciting!

 

And "innovation" is a terribly nebulous, overblown, and overrated concept to be so concerned about its slowdown. Stop worshipping at the altar of this false god!

 

Considering that the benefits of "innovation"  overwhelmingly accrue to the upper strata of society, such a slowdown might actually be beneficial as for once they might actually "trickle down" to the mass of people who might actually be able to use it to improve their lot life.

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16 minutes ago, Massdriver said:

The rates on paper weren't paid. Don't you see? The effective rates weren't much higher than what the rates are today. Thus, when you use that as evidence that the economy will be just fine, it is fallacious. There is a high amount of uncertainty on what will happen if you jack up rates to 90%. My guess is it wouldn't be as great as all of you seem to think. But I'm in luck. Pelosi is a capitalist and she knows this. She knows much more than Cortez does about economic literature (yes I'm aware of her degree), etc. She will likely allow them to have some sort of voice, but she will sideline the more radical proposals because they are dangerous for the Democratic Party and the nation.

 

As for the middle class, I agree that we need universal healthcare. I agree with helping the poor and middle class more. I can be for those things without resorting to 90% income tax rates.

 

Edit: I've also read Krugman's article. There are other economists out there that don't agree with Krugman or the economists he cited to make it seem as if there is a consensus that 70% is the optimal rate of taxation. From what I can tell, there is no consensus of any kind and he is misrepresenting the facts. There are arguments all over the place on the optimal level of taxation, and citing one recent paper doesn't change that.

 

We're not talking about 90%, though how about, since a lot of businesses have screwed with the environment and lobbied for looser regulation in the name of "mah money" and ironically ruined ecosystems, small businesses in coastal areas in Florida, tourism and yes, the economy, hike their rates high but give them enormous write-offs if they invest in energy-efficient infrastructure, solar power, electric cars, etc. etc. that'll save money long-term?

 

As far as I'm concerned, fucking up the environment as we continue to do is more dangerous than anything AOC could propose. We either pay more now or we'll pay a lot more in the future. We're already paying more dealing with environmental clean-up and disaster relief.

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5 minutes ago, SFLUFAN said:

But that's what makes it fun and exciting!

AhHA!! The truth comes out. It's the same thing I have encountered with some Trump voters. They voted for him because it's a fun show!

 

4 minutes ago, SaysWho? said:

 

We're not talking about 90%, though how about, since a lot of businesses have screwed with the environment and lobbied for looser regulation in the same of "mah money" and ironically ruined ecosystems, small businesses in coastal areas in Florida, tourism and yes, the economy, hike their rates high but give them enormous write-offs if they invest in energy-efficient infrastructure, solar power, electric cars, etc. etc. that'll save money long-term?

 

As far as I'm concerned, fucking up the environment as we continue to do is more dangerous than anything AOC could propose. We either pay more now or we'll pay a lot more in the future. We're already paying more dealing with environmental clean-up and disaster relief.

As I said previously, if we want to help the environment, the very best policy we can advocate for is to tax carbon. Regulations need to be tightened on the environment as well, but that is the single biggest thing we can do. 

 

Edit: Think about it for a minute. Taxing carbon in one stroke does everything you just said in one policy. It directly taxes the thing ruining our environment more than any other thing. A natural consequence of taxing carbon will be more energy efficient infrastructure, solar power, electric cars, etc.

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4 minutes ago, Massdriver said:

AhHA!! The truth comes out. It's the same thing I have encountered with some Trump voters. They voted for him because it's a fun show!

 

As I said previously, if we want to help the environment, the very best policy you can advocate for is to tax carbon. Regulations need to be tightened on the environment as well, but that is the single biggest thing we can do. 

 

Carbon tax and allowing big write-offs for investing in green energy sound like big winners. I'm just tired of removing regulation after regulation to help rich assholes. I don't want vague, "We'll look at it," ideas. We gave Rick Scott a promotion here after he slashes regulations, including on septic tanks, and now those septic tanks are so dirty and disgusting that they contributed to our blue-green algae bloom

 

Even I've felt more like a populist in recent years with shit like this, especially the more I talk with rich people (who are in high quantities in this state) who grew up with daddy buying boats for them and never lived in an apartment who tell me, "It's not about how much money you have. You don't need it to be happy!"

 

Fuck off. :talkhand:

 

I find more diplomatic ways to tell them that.

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1 minute ago, SaysWho? said:

 

Carbon tax and allowing big write-offs for investing in green energy sound like big winners. I'm just tired of removing regulation after regulation to help rich assholes. I don't want vague, "We'll look at it," ideas. We gave Rick Scott a promotion here after he slashes regulations, including on septic tanks, and now those septic tanks are so dirty and disgusting that they contributed to our blue-green algae bloom

 

Even I've felt more like a populist in recent years with shit like this, especially the more I talk with rich people (who are in high quantities in this state) who grew up with daddy buying boats for them and never lived in an apartment who tell me, "It's not about how much money you have. You don't need it to be happy!"

 

Fuck off. :talkhand:

 

I find more diplomatic ways to tell them that.

Carbon tax for the win! At least we can all agree on that!

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Just now, Massdriver said:

Carbon tax for the win! At least we can all agree on that!

 

Of course! Of all the more capitalist people who have ever posted here, you're one of the few whose intentions I trust.

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3 minutes ago, SaysWho? said:

 

Of course! Of all the more capitalist people who have ever posted here, you're one of the few whose intentions I trust.

Muahahhahh! :devil: :p

 

In all seriousness, thanks! I don't know if everyone here agrees with you, but I appreciate that! :sun:

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A carbon tax with dividend is going to help absolutely no one of we don't fix our built environment. Putting all of our eggs in the innovation basket is a fools errand, and wishful thinking. When on net a suburban commuter pays the same for gas and has very few viable means to save money by reducing their footprint by riding a bike (dangerous without dedicated facilities), taking public transit (largely non-existent in the suburbs), or moving to a place closer to their/their spouses work(a multitude of issues here, and can assume will be done by a large number of people due to the incentives)  this will negatively impact the lower/lower middle classes, as the wealthy will be able to net the savings because they will have the means to do many of these things. The market can and will take care of the wealthy, but everyone else will apparently have to wait our turn. Much like new construction of condos and apartments in high demand cities, the market will shoot for those most able to pay, and while eventually better options may become available to the rest of us (better tech,etc) it is irresponsible to make that our only option.

 

Further, the effects of climate change are here and we do need to adapt now and for the future, even with a carbon tax and dividend.

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22 minutes ago, b_m_b_m_b_m said:

Putting all of our eggs in the innovation basket is a fools errand, and wishful thinking

Amen.

 

And not just climate-related innovation, but the benefits of practically ALL forms of innovation have been found to overwhelmingly accrue to the higher social strata which is why I view the slowing down of innovation to be no great irredeemable sin.

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14 hours ago, b_m_b_m_b_m said:

A carbon tax with dividend is going to help absolutely no one of we don't fix our built environment. Putting all of our eggs in the innovation basket is a fools errand, and wishful thinking. When on net a suburban commuter pays the same for gas and has very few viable means to save money by reducing their footprint by riding a bike (dangerous without dedicated facilities), taking public transit (largely non-existent in the suburbs), or moving to a place closer to their/their spouses work(a multitude of issues here, and can assume will be done by a large number of people due to the incentives)  this will negatively impact the lower/lower middle classes, as the wealthy will be able to net the savings because they will have the means to do many of these things. The market can and will take care of the wealthy, but everyone else will apparently have to wait our turn. Much like new construction of condos and apartments in high demand cities, the market will shoot for those most able to pay, and while eventually better options may become available to the rest of us (better tech,etc) it is irresponsible to make that our only option.

 

Further, the effects of climate change are here and we do need to adapt now and for the future, even with a carbon tax and dividend.

 

I don't see how it negatively impacts the middle class whenever they are getting paid for their carbon use. If the commuter is getting paid dividends back, then how is it hurting them? The people getting hurt the most would be the fossil fuel industry, but I thought you would like that. The innovation in the energy markets will benefit everyone. I'm talking about solar, wind, nuclear (maybe, it seems that solar and wind will be cheaper and better if energy storage tech works out), and energy storage becoming better and better to a point that it is cheaper than natural gas. We are talking about gasoline and diesel fueled cars being subpar and more expensive. This sort of innovation will help both the environment and the middle class. This seems pretty basic. There isn’t any real faith involved. We already have seen that subsidizing wind and solar leads to more wind and solar. Taxing carbon is a subside for wind and solar, and every other carbon free energy source. 

 

A carbon tax that ramps up quickly over a 10 year period of time would transform the country's energy and fuel infrastructure quicker than a vague green new deal. 

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Rich people don't care if I grovel in the fucking dirt due to medical expenses, so I don't care if they get taxed 105%. Fuck 'em.

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IMO the conversation should be focused less on overall marginal tax rates than on *what* is taxed and the aims of taxation.  The goal should be to tax away forms of economic rent—land rent, financial rent (interest/usurious income) and certain forms of monopoly rent—as distinct from industrial profits, to maximize the circular flow between said profits and wages through redistribution.

 

That’s not crude Marxism.  As was understood by Smith, Ricardo, Veblen, to some extent Keynes, and, going back even further, the Physiocrats, economic rent is not productive income.  It does not contribute to augmenting the economic surplus.  Instead, it is parasitic in nature, diverting money away from productive activities and diminishing the aforementioned circular flow and the overall productive capacity of the economy.

 

If this were the focus of the debate over taxation, then whatever the eventual rate turns out to be, it will nonetheless be geared towards what ought to be the proper function of taxation, rather than a less directly productive goal of merely ‘soaking the rich’.

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1 hour ago, Signifyin(g)Monkey said:

IMO the conversation should be focused less on overall marginal tax rates than on *what* is taxed and the aims of taxation.  The goal should be to tax away forms of economic rent—land rent, financial rent (interest/usurious income) and certain forms of monopoly rent—as distinct from industrial profits, to maximize the circular flow between said profits and wages through redistribution.

 

That’s not crude Marxism.  As was understood by Smith, Ricardo, Veblen, to some extent Keynes, and, going back even further, the Physiocrats, economic rent is not productive income.  It does not contribute to augmenting the economic surplus.  Instead, it is parasitic in nature, diverting money away from productive activities and diminishing the aforementioned circular flow and the overall productive capacity of the economy.

 

If this were the focus of the debate over taxation, then whatever the eventual rate turns out to be, it will nonetheless be geared towards what ought to be the proper function of taxation, rather than a less directly productive goal of merely ‘soaking the rich’.

Are you suggesting a land value tax? :]

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19 hours ago, Massdriver said:

 

I don't see how it negatively impacts the middle class whenever they are getting paid for their carbon use. If the commuter is getting paid dividends back, then how is it hurting them? The people getting hurt the most would be the fossil fuel industry, but I thought you would like that. The innovation in the energy markets will benefit everyone. I'm talking about solar, wind, nuclear (maybe, it seems that solar and wind will be cheaper and better if energy storage tech works out), and energy storage becoming better and better to a point that it is cheaper than natural gas. We are talking about gasoline and diesel fueled cars being subpar and more expensive. This sort of innovation will help both the environment and the middle class. This seems pretty basic. There isn’t any real faith involved. We already have seen that subsidizing wind and solar leads to more wind and solar. Taxing carbon is a subside for wind and solar, and every other carbon free energy source. 

 

A carbon tax that ramps up quickly over a 10 year period of time would transform the country's energy and fuel infrastructure quicker than a vague green new deal. 

No one cares about changing the source of power for their homes. Solar, wind, coal, hydro, nuclear, doesn't really make much of a concrete difference to an average user so long as the lights turn on. The transportation sector is where things will hurt for people, especially with a rapid increase in carbon taxes, which I am fine with. You give people an incentive to reduce their carbon footprint, but few means by which to actually change behavior in their transportation choices, other than buy a more expensive, subpar car gas powered car, as you admit (best case a carbon free car comes along that is comparable in price...but that is somewhat wishful thinking too, as without good Intercity travel options, electric cars are garbage for long distance)  This is where carbon taxes alone fall weak, and need to be paired with alternatives to driving. Some places don't even have sidewalks, so you can't even safely walk!

 

I say take all of the above and do it.

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3 minutes ago, RedSoxFan9 said:

 

 

At what income level would that 70% rate start at?  That's an important factor, I think.

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Just now, mclumber1 said:

 

At what income level would that 70% rate start at?  That's an important factor, I think.

 

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