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23 July 2012

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Earl Crabb

Concerning my canine contribution to the conversation: What has the dobie done to earn his gruel? Does he represent the defense department, greedily lapping up the wealth of the household, while the young multi-ethnic American Mutt must live on leftovers? Does he have some bones buried in an offshore yard down the street? What is for dessert? Perhaps a dose of chocolate, which can be fatal for a dog? Will he become obese, thereby bankrupting his owner with vet bills? We're all in the doghouse on this one.

Ben Emery

George,
What you fail to mention this is income tax not all taxes and what is fair to ask someone who earns such little money to qualify to pay income taxes to cut out some necessities such as health care to be able to live a remotely decent lifestyle. What also is not mentioned is labor is taxed at a much higher rate than capital gains/ dividends. Why is it that those who actually work for living don't earn enough to qualify to pay income taxes. Another thing about the graph they are talking about household income not personal incomes. Personal (individual) incomes have reduced spending power over the last 30 years while the top 1% incomes have gone up dramatically gobbling up over 80% of economic gains in the same time period. Nearly 50% of personal income earners take home less than $25k annually, which is about $2k less in spending power when adjusted for inflation since 1980. The problem is housing, health care, and education have all increased 200, 300, 400 percent but wages have basically fallen. The top 1% have seen the income skyrocket, taxes decrease, and tax shelters/ loopholes open up all in the name of trickle down economics. Now here we are with the greatest wealth disparity in the developed world, an unemployment rate officially at 8% plus but really around 16-20%, foreclosure crisis, no manufacturing, and a elite class crying class warfare. Give me a break.

George Rebane

BenE 1257pm - what about 'share of national income' and 'share of federal taxes' don't you understand. You are again inserting smoke to imply a fire where there is none. And then we go loop-de-looping into topic areas, such as 'social justice', which only you understand. The question is simple, if the top 20% earn, say, 50% of the total national income (wages, interest, dividends, ...) reported to the IRS, is their paying 68% of all federal taxes 'fair'. BTW, they also pay a greatly disproportionate share of state and local taxes. And their taxes on the various properties is way in excess of any conceivable services they receive in return from the various taxing jurisdictions.

Don't you see why we cannot go on together like this Ben? We both believe the other is raping us.

George Rebane

EarlC 1154am - Bob, that is a precious comment. You compose prose as well as you draw. Unfortunately, I'm not sure about your ability here to discern reality from the story you weave around your excellent progressive propaganda cartoon.

The DOD is a government agency that "laps" from the government treasury only as much and at the pleasure of government. And when did your well-described "multi-ethnice mutt" (who doesn't pay taxes, but does benefit from the DOD) become a ward of the state who is short changed on ANYTHING, and who must subsist on "leftovers". Leftovers from what???

For example, take a look at the largess that the feds have put in place since the Messiah took charge - among them is an explosive increase in the latitude it takes to qualify for food stamps, and the number of people taking advantage of food stamps.

And "What has the dobie done to earn his gruel?" If he's the DOD, space does not permit me to count the ways. If he's of the cohort that creates the country's wealth, then he's the only one that provides the multi-ethnic mutt with jobs (government and private sector), and absent that, with welfare. Unless, of course, you are also among the acolytes promoting the Messiah's most recent missal to the masses - 'It was the multi-ethnic mutt that actually created the wealth that is disproportionately enjoyed by the dobie.'

Ben Emery

George,
How much does someone pay in payroll taxes who only earns their income by capital gains/ dividends, you know a real capitalist? They pay zero. I pay 15.3% if you consider any portion picked up by my employer would be going into my wages otherwise. Just that alone is 0.3% higher than a maximum level of capital gains tax. 35% of my income goes towards federal taxes. It is in our nation's interest that people work and earn enough to live and contribute to tax revenue doesn't it. The fact is over the last thirty years plus the incentives have been towards keeping capital instead of reinvesting it back from where it came. This phenomena leads us directly to our Free Trade Agreements and tax code. A short term gain for the investor class has destroyed the economic fabric of the United States of America while at the same time putting the burden onto the government to try to keep people at a lifestyle that took over a 100 years of prosperity to put in place. I will be the first to admit as Americans we need to reduce our lifestyles but not so those who are the wealthiest among us can have more.

Earl Crabb

George, trying to lump me into the 'progressive sympathizer' column (fifth?) is misleading. You should know by now that I see the continual entrenchment of government as a negative. However, I hardly agree that the poor conservative trillionaire is being unfairly beaten down. There would not be a progressive movement as powerful as it is today without extremely excessive behavior by the "greed is good" mentality. Whether its name is Gorden Gekko or Collis Huntington, the robber barons and their derivitive mumbo jumbo have done as much damage to the capitalist system as anything a marxist could dream up.
Just looking at the current tax return evasion by the Romneys is telling. If there's nothing to hide, why the mystery? Having Ann address their critics as "you people" tells me the libs aren't the only ones who see this as class warfare.
As someone who seeks (unsuccessfully) balance, I find no heroes in the race for Pennsylvania Ave.

Ben Emery

RL,
Try looking at Johnson(Libertarian)or Stein(Green) or even Anderson (?). Johnson had my vote until Stein came in and has worked hard despite her odds. Stein is on the ballot or petitioning currently in 40 states. I think 10 states haven't even started the petitioning period. Stein also has received matching funds in about 20 states already. Are any of the three going to win, not even close. Can we scare the duopoly into moving to a form of government that is representative of the people? As an eternal optimist, I say yes.

George Rebane

BenE 201pm - I think I found your problem. You are continuing to think that the CBO cited 'national income' is composed of only payrolls. It is not, as I have indicated. And therefore more taxes than on just payroll is involved here.

And you have a most curious concept of 'rich' people "keeping capital instead of reinvesting it back from where it came from". How do you think those people "keep" capital? under a mattress? The money goes back into capital markets where it earns a return based on the risk of loss to which it is subject.

THEMIKEYMCD

Anybody catch Job Lovitz's (democrat) comments on our 'eat the rich' tax system?

"This whole thing with Obama saying the rich don't pay their taxes is f**king bullsh**. And I voted for the guy, and I'm a Democrat. What a f**king a**hole. The rich don't pay their taxes? Let me tell you something, right. First they say to you, you're dead broke, 'the United States of America, you can do anything you want, go for it.' So then you go for it and then you make it, and everyone's like 'f**k you.'"

George Rebane

EarlC 238pm - Maybe I missed it Bob, but I think you just changed the subject from the discussion of your cartoon whose characters were correctly interpreted as per our previous comments. The cartoon does not hang a middle-roader balanced ideologue garland around your neck; but it does indicate that you may have blown your left front tire and veered suddenly toward port.

Lapsing into hyperbole ('beaten down conservative trillionaires') doesn't move the ball on this discussion. But it does indicate a desire to avoid the topic of this post.

What fraction of their total income should the top 20% pay to the federal govt, in addition to all the other taxes they pay? As I've mentioned for some years, the progressive can't answer such questions. Conservatives can. The silent middle throw their weight with progressives as they watch and concur the addition of new taxes.

We here recall the statements of many wise men about not being able to raise the poor by beating down the rich. But again, those statements have made no impression on the Left - what simpler way is there to buy the votes of the poor?

Ben Emery

George,
What you have found is a way to move the subject around so there is not any foundation to stand on.

The top 1% has accumulated more wealth than the bottom 90% of Americans. Really it is only a very small fraction of the top 1% that have a vast majority of the wealth. The Walton Family heirs alone (6 people) have now surpassed the bottom 40% of Americans in accumulated wealth equaling $89.5 billion. If those 6 heirs who basically inherited their "success" were to not have $89 billion of that money they would still be way up at the top of the top 1% wealth ladder. But you want someone who makes $25k a year to pay more in taxes so the Walton's can enjoy more tax breaks to have more money they cannot possibly need or spend, your sense of economic justice is warped. Tell me who uses the common infrastructure more to earn their income the Walton heirs or the Rebane's? We all need to pay our fair share of the common infrastructure that makes us a civil society and the UNITED States of America.

George Rebane

BenE 357pm - I answered the question; will you? Or will progressive pontification continue?

(How in hell does a $25K/yr pay more taxes than the Waltons???!!! Do you read what you write??)

Ben Emery

George,
You want someone who earns $25k to pay more in taxes than they do presently so the Walton's can receive more tax breaks instead of having the Walton's paying their share of the costs of having a functional society and nation. The same society and nation from which they live and benefit from the common infrastructure. The same goes for large corporations.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CUUA8g3DPw

If we want a balanced budget and functional society, the Walton's and those who are in the same income brackets need to pay their share for the upkeep and upgrading of that infrastructure.

Ben Emery

George,
"I answered the question; will you? Or will progressive pontification continue?"

What question? We cannot continue this never ending discussion. As I told RL, I am an eternal optimist and believe we can understand each others perception than we can come up with a common agreement. I don't have a problem with those who invest making more money. I do have a problem when those who invest do so in a way that hurts the average citizen of our nation or the poor around the world through speculation of commodities. I don't have a problem with someone who has more experience and education earning 30 to 1 over their employee's but do have a problem with someone making 500 to 1 over their employees while their employee's can no longer afford to live in our society. These are destructive shifts in our economic and tax code policies that have taken place over the last 40 years or so.

billy T

My taxes are fair, its the other guy who isn't paying his fair share. Ring around the rosy, pockets full of posies, ashes, ashes, we all fall down. Hard to argue with cold hard data. Its trapped on paper, lying still, emotionless, with no compassion or opinion. Still,its the other guy who is the problem. Its jobs, jobs, jobs you dummies. Its a cash flow problem. No job, no cash coming in. More taxes go to handouts. Handouts do not bring cash coming into your pocket. Obamacare is a job killer. Tax everybody more! That will bring more cash into your man purses. People such as Tommie Peterbuilt decry that that guy over there ain't paying his fair share. Well, that guy over there will soon start paying 45% on capital gains. Wonder why job creators are having a hard time obtaining capital? Before Dodd Frank, you would get penalized for not loaning money to Tommie Peterbuilt. After Dodd Frank, you get penalized for loaning money to Tommie Peterbuilt. Look at the candidates for Prez. The current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave burned more mula last month that he took in. A spender who needs more. His opponent brought in more dollars last month than he spent, a good steward of money. One has a cash problem, the other does not. Higher taxes leaves us all with less walking around money. What Dodd Frank and class warfare and the tax debate can never to is calculate human behavior and human response to legislation. We don't need Uncle Sam to have dollars falling out of his jacket pockets. What we need is more cash in all our pockets. We have a cash flow problem, a job creation problem, not what the other guy is paying problem.

billy T

Ben, my sense of justice is reward (good or bad) for what each as produced from the toil of one's labor. I suppose your sense of justice is akin to a classroom or UC Santa Cruz where the grading system has been abolished. Everybody passes, nobody get an A. Afterall, people like me come from a hard background with unspeakable hardships to overcome. Its not fair that I have to compete with the dude born with a silver spoon in his mouth from prep schools with tution higher than Harvard. Its not fair. He gets an A and I get a C Where is the justice. This is justice. I sleep in, I am fired. I slack, my income is cut. I excell, I am rewarded. That is justice. If you plant pumpkin seeds, you don't get tomatoes on the vine. That is justice. If I leave a legacy to my children, that is my justice. Skewed justice is to tell me how much the Walton kids should have. Like, someone has the wisdom or right to tell another how much is enough or too much? There is always justice as things have a way of evening out. The man who worries about his well running dry draws water that never will quench his thirst. The problem with your kind of justice is you don't say "I want a house/car/wife like that other guy." Nah! You say within yourself "I want his house. his car, his wife." That is not justice. That is envy, a defect that is worse than stealing.

billy T

Clarification, Ben. Not "you" specially, but "you" generally. We agree on one thing. "I do have a problem when those who invest do so in a way that hurts the average citizen of our nation or the poor around the world through speculation of commodities." Yep, some people have made billions by betting against the US Dollar. One such individual that comes to mind is on the top ten list of richest men in America. His name is George Soros.

George Rebane

BenE 428pm - I think this discussion has drawn to a close, you have gone way over my head. I stand my my feeble efforts to draw a productive response from you.

Earl Crabb

George, it was you that asked the question: Are taxes fair enough? Truth is, I don't know. When one party's nominee doesn't want to share such information one can only speculate. It still boggles the mind how the Romulans were so clueless as to believe that this question would not come up, or that Cayman and Swiss bank accounts would not look good to the average joe who is paying his bank for the privilege of writing checks while storing his meager nest egg in their vault. (and I will agree that Obama's own sketchy past is open for discussion.)
But if you can stretch the imagination far enough to call the President of the United States a Marxist, surely I can get away with a little hyperbolizin' of my own.

Todd Juvinall

I hope Romney releases only two years required by law or tradition. For goodness sakes, what have we become in America?

George Rebane

EarlC 1102pm - Bob, you don't know about fair taxes, and instead changed the subject to Romney's taxes about which there is nothing illegal, immoral, or fattening, and which will be released as those of previous candidates. OK, given what you want to defend, I can understand that.

But my calling Obama a Marxist is neither a stretch nor a solo flight by my part. The elements of evidence (also cited in these pages) for that assertion are legion and landing more heavily with every passing week. Hyperbolizin' on Romney is just that when nothing else is available.

TomKenworth

Since you are not resp[onding on RLCrabb's blog, I'll post here, since the subject matter is the same: Glad to see you recognize that being a self made person on a planet with no other humans or contributions means that all you happen to acquire there, is YOURS. On a planet where you got lucky enough to get transferred to the most prosperous nation on earth (didn’t get blown apart during WWII, has huge reserves of just about everything, except maybe lithium, you have been GIVEN an opportunity to go for it. That doesn’t not include the right beat the crap out of all others along the way for personal gain, or having no concerns for those who may have not been given a sound mind in a sound body. It also does not include the right to pretend that you live on the planet with no other humans, and that therefore, anything you can acquire is all yours, and that you OWE nothing to the government or the others. The more successful you are, the better you have gamed the system, but you don’t get to GRAB IT ALL.

Everyone that travels 49 from Nevada City to North San Juan in less than 20 minutes, owes one heckova debt to those who came before, and made those trails, then roads and bridges, and finally paved roads, not to mention those who invented the motorized vehicle and improvements, and to the government that cradled them the whole way. You may quote me.

TomKenworth

" For goodness sakes, what have we become in America? " A nation of inquiring minds, trying to figure out who screwed us over and how. If Romney is innocent, then no big deal, and a small price to pay for a chance at becoming President.

Todd Juvinall

OK Keachie, release yours so we all can see what a public employee gets in retirement. Come on, post your returns. Scan and send them here. Inquiring minds want to know.

TomKenworth

You first, but I have already stated what I get after nearly 20 years of FTE and 10 years of occasional subbing, about 1800/month, and I am not allowed to collect social security, even though I've earned it. Now it is your turn, what are you living on, Todd?

Todd Juvinall

Savings and small investments. There. Now scan those returns and put them up here for us to peruse.

Todd Juvinall

Oh hey, I went on the train (heavily subsidized) from Auburn to SF last Thursday. I had never been through West Sac and lo and behold there was this large multi story building and at the top (10-12 floors?), there was a sign. CALSTRS. Wow, I bet when you travel there to get your check you just have to be PO'd.

Earl Crabb

You're right, George, I don't know squat about taxes, and being in the 99% range, I guess I don't pay any. Hardy har har. I don't have any desire to soak the rich, as it were. Rich people buy artwork, a fact that is not lost on me. But I would like to know how much a 1%er like Romney, with an army of accountants, actually pays after he legally buries his profits in treasure chests buried on the beaches of foreign shores. Then I might be more inclined to offer an opinion.

TomKenworth

You mean this building in blue? You have left out, how much, Todd: http://www.flickr.com/photos/keachie/6096731059/lightbox/

BTW, Romney's toast.

Todd Juvinall

Romney paid 3 million in taxes in 2010 and gave 7 million to charity and his church. Hefre is the tax return. Read it and compare it to any liberal tightwad's return.

https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/286400-romney-2010-1040.html#document/p140/a42989

I hope the link works. It has a sidebar where you can see the returns parts and the page numbers they are on.

Regarding my totals Keachie, none of your business.

Scott Obermuller

Tom KenWorthless - "A nation of inquiring minds, trying to figure out who screwed us over and how." The conservatives already know how. In fact, we saw it coming and pointed it out. Now it's here and for the exact reason that we warned you about. But it doesn't fit your narrative, so you ignore it and keep going downward, financially.
The left wing heaven has arrived in California - what's the problem?
R Crabb has decided that in America people are now guilty of crimes unless they prove themselves innocent.
And of course, we now have the specter of the 'speculator'. Terrible people. They hurt people by speculating. Some how. Ben is certain of it, but can't explain.
But it's fun blaming people we don't know or associate with for everything that's wrong. Back in the day, it was the darkies or the foreigners - now it's the speculators. I guess ignorant and fearful low life need some group to blame their troubles on. It's always been that way and sadly all of the educational opportunities that exist don't have any effect.

Michael Anderson

What I know about taxes is that I pay money to subsidize other people in the health care system--a LOT of money--and it has nothing to do with gov't, this is the unregulated "free market" looking for deep pockets to mine like just so many ore bodies.

It's a corruption tax, and under the antiquated political systems of local, state, and federal gov't in the USA, I am the sucker. But not for long, things are changing.

Here's some fine reading for those actually seeking answers:

http://ayoungmomsmusings.blogspot.com.au/2012/07/how-i-lost-my-fear-of-universal-health.html

http://ayoungmomsmusings.blogspot.com/2012/07/why-i-used-to-be-afraid-of-universal.html

http://ayoungmomsmusings.blogspot.com/2012/04/unwrapping-onion-part-one-secret.html

Enjoy...M.

Todd Juvinall

I am still trying to find in the Constitution where it says a private business must serve a class of people or must treat a certain ailment. It seems to me that government has sneaked into every insurance policies contract language with its customers. I also can't seem to find it in the Constitution where a private hospital is required to treat anyone who walks in. I understand it if it was a government hospital but please MichaelA, show me in the enumerated Document the requirements on the acts of supplying private business healthcare offerings. That is why your taxes are so high as well as the insurance policy costs.

THEMIKEYMCD

Gentlemen, for our mutual benefit I have copy/pasted Obama's economic growth plan below, enjoy:

Part A:
Part B:
Part C:
Part D:
Part E:


"What you are doing is the opposite of help" -Shrek

THEMIKEYMCD

MichaelA, to consider our health care system as a free market is an act of insanity. It is precisely the fact that it is not a free market that is causing all the problems. A rational man cannot ignore the negative impacts of Medicare on the value (or lack thereof) of health care. A rational man cannot ignore the fact that each state has a different regulatory environment than the next, again decreasing value provided. A rational man cannot ignore the fact that despite high costs insurance companies and hospitals are not making lucrative amounts of money (save a few stealthy ceos); my insurance company has a 2% net margin.

Michael Anderson

Todd asked: "I also can't seem to find it in the Constitution where a private hospital is required to treat anyone who walks in."

Great question Todd, I've been asking the same thing for decades. Let me know if you ever get an answer.

Ben Emery

Some good news for those of us who don't trust the Federal Reserve. I thank Tom McClintock on facebook for his vote.

http://www.campaignforliberty.org/profile/7788/blog/2012/07/25/audit-fed-passes-0

My post on Facebook about the vote.

Thank You Congressman McClintock for voting to Audit the Federal Reserve (The Fed). We need full disclosure of the distribution of US money supply by the private banks that make up the The Fed. Up to $14 trillion was handed out after the 2008 crash by The Fed. We didn't find out about the trillions until the first audit of the Federal Reserve 2010 (Ron Paul and Bernie Sanders) since its inception in 1913.

THEMIKEYMCD

Dear Progressive Who Believes in Tax Loopholes for the Rich, I would like to hire you to help me find said loopholes. I have researched for years and found none. In fact, many common deductions available for the lower and middle class are not permitted for the 'rich.' Furthermore, simply saving to an IRA is not allowed for the 'rich.' Thank you for helping me.

Signed,

Real World

Michael Anderson

Oh com'on Mikey, that's ridiculous. You must not be hanging out with the right rich people. We're not talking about the people who have less than 50 million dollars, it's the folks above that number. You know about this threshold, yes?

Ben Emery

Mickey,
Some great American tax dodgers that don't want to pay their share to keep America great, or in other words, your hero's.
http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2011/03/bernie-sanders-tax-targets.html

Name 2010 Lobbying Expenditures
ExxonMobil $12,450,000
Bank of America $3,980,000
General Electric $39,290,000
Chevron $12,890,000
Boeing $17,896,000
Valero Energy $644,000
Goldman Sachs $4,610,000
Citigroup $5,840,000
ConocoPhillips $19,626,382
Carnival Corp. $120,000
Total: $117,346,382

Donate to Bernie Sanders campaign here
https://services.myngp.com/ngponlineservices/contribution.aspx?X=O38xUCC6cZGMCzykoyZBBDEu3ipe1B7SZQNYC%2bODF5o%3d

Todd Juvinall

Mickey, I get what ou are saying. A loophole to those who hate Exxon is really a law passed by Congress and signed the President, therefore it is not a loophole in reality it is a law.

The loopholes in real life are the eco non profits who have all the bases covered in their money laundering schemes. They create a hysteria about a ummm, large cat, then fund raise on the sympathy of givers, spend the money on salaries to their lobbyists (and donations and "lists" of their legislative supporters) and then pay no taxes. Now that is a loophole. Oops, I mean, that is a eco nonprofit.

Edward Peritz

Todd, old boy, even my GOP and very Republican Texas millionaire friends--at least the ones with a moral character--are for closing the loopholes, which are secret passages, if you will, that CFO's pay the big bucks to corporate lawyers and accountants to find so they can continue to withhold money due the government.

Yes, what this country needs is a conservative hero, to swoop in and save us all from those evil dark forces. But wait a minute. It can't be Mitt and his five boys, not a one has shown what it takes to have helped build this country, forged from the liberal ideas of the Enlightenment and opposed by the Crown and the conservative fops and flops. Not much has changed. And yes, I and my family have been paying our taxes and fighting in all the wars to establish and maintain this country since the mid-17th century.

THEMIKEYMCD

George, I don't think the above graphic showing that the wealthy pay nearly all income tax is viewable... or are the progressives simply incapable of understanding it?

Have 'they' ever seen this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=661pi6K-8WQ

Scott Obermuller

Oh Boy - 'secret' tax loop holes that only Edward Peritz knows about. He would enumerate them, but then he'd be thrown out of the Secret Loophole Club.

TomKenworth

The most obvious loophole of them all drives through in and around us everyday, and parks in the lots for boat launching ramps at all our local lakes. There ought to be a site for photos of commercially labeled trucks towing luxury stinkpots to Tahoe, Bullards and Scotts Flat, such that the IRS can look at the plates and signage, and then look to see if the vehicle is 100% declared as "for business only." Unfair? No different than rousting the homeless from under the overpasses, on a tip from a "concerned citizen."

Likewise motorhomes, supposedly for convention and other presentation use, in campgrounds, with the magnetic and canvas signage removed.

Another? Building materials bought (or at least declared for) for business use that winds up in private residences. We need monitoring for this sort of abuse, more so than for voter fraud. Why do 97% of business in USA make less than $250,000? Because the overage is carefully "deducted" first. It camouflages the local heavyweights into slightly high middle class. Shall I go on? Nope, don't want to run up the spamometer.

billy T

Tommie, you are correct about people are hurting. To be fair, lets look at the record without blame, just facts. Since 2008, real personal income has rose 0.1% average. That is zero point one percent average since 2008. The GDP has been revised down to 1.9% for the first quarter. Second quarter GNP has come in at 1.5 %, probably to revised downward in 3 months. This is by far the worse and most anemic recovery since World War II and makes the World War II "recovery" look great by comparison. So, lets tax people. Lets tax the shit out of them. As Dr. Rebane's graph shows, it must be fair, right? You remind me of President B. H. Obama. He says it is fair so it must be true. That is why he said the private sector is doing fine. Poor poor struggling public sector. He said last week (or was it this week?) that his economic plan is working. He thinks it, so it must be true. Putting the ranked 3rd most liberal in the Senate (Senator Joe Biden) in charge of the 800 billion Stimulus was a great idea and it worked! He thinks it, therefore it must be true. He says it because he thinks it is true. The rich are not paying their fair share he says. Gee Wally, you think it is true? Do ya Wally? I think that is kinda creepy Beaver.

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