☞ Disputable

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3 Responses

  1. I historically have called myself a republican, though I’m hardly a redneck.

    The problem is that the “Republicans” in office act more like Democrats; nobody wants to cut programs. Some of the worst programs are the ones with the most power lobbies — labor unions (especially public employee labor unions) are behind a non-trivial number of these.

    One of the best examples of a Republican acting like a Democrat is our California governor — Republican in name only.

    The whole lot of these politicians need to go; preferably to be replaced by folks who understand basic economics:

    a) spending more than you make is a recipe for disaster
    b) you can’t grow the economy solely with investment in the public sector
    c) capitalism only “works” if entities are allowed to “fail”… bailouts defeat capitalism.
    e) socialism removes incentive to improve, and governments always do things more poorly than commercial enterprises
    f) allowing for increased investment in private sector makes jobs, and promotes growth (see “Reaganomics” and the boom times of the 80’s and 90’s.)
    g) the best way to increase tax revenue is to increase individual income and spending… increase the gross rather than take a larger percentage

    I’m not adverse to some tax increases, but the main thing is that we have to stop burning money solely on public sector and entitlement programs.

    Once we get back to basics, then the smart people who work where there is money to be made (the commercial sector) will get this economy booming again.

    • Well stated Garrett.

      I also have to laugh at the numbers a little that are being used. You can make anything look good it you start excluding all kinds of things. For instance “The BEA classifies Social Security taxes as insurance payments and excludes them from the tax calculation.” Considering that if you make a lower end wage that this turns out to be quite a bit of the Federal tax burden do you think that it makes sense to exclude it. A lower wage would also include if you are on unemployment or other forms of public assistance. Taking a 10% average basic unemployment rate for the time period that they are talking out and that would of course make sense. This of course does not even take into account the under-employment rate or the people that have just run out of unemployment assistance.

      Of course it also does not include Sales Taxes, Property Taxes, Government Fees and such. This is a neat trick of course to get around saying that “Taxes” are burdensome when they are really referring to one particular Tax. All of these have been creeping up and have just as much of effect.

      Of course the better way to look at it is overall Gross Revenue that the government (local, state and ferderal) collects. Matching that against personal and business income gives you a true tax burden. Also matching that against spending gives you the true governmental burden.

      Now no one in their right mind is saying don’t tax and don’t spend. What most fiscal conservatives like myself are saying is don’t tax and don’t spend unnecessarily. What has been going on is that later. The party affiliation has not bearing on this. The Republicans are in hot water of course because they forgot many of their ideals in this regard.

      Nobody expects a liberal Democrat to adhere to a strict fiscal policy. But if after some extreme number games to pretend to be better than everyone else seems a little odd.

  2. Dear Garrett,

    My apologies in advance for what I’m about to say. I truly respect any and all who have a passion for our political process, regardless of party affiliation. However, as a California native and a proud liberal, I have to call out that which I believe to be inaccurate in your statements. So then…

    >a) spending more than you make is a recipe for disaster

    True. Wasteful spending is a bad thing and I believe most everyone agrees with this. However, placing artificial caps on what we can make is not only anti-capitalistic in nature, but also an indirect method to sacrifice the have-nots while preserving wealth in the name of being more capable of understanding macroeconomics. Businesses understand this very well: if your costs outweigh your revenue, charge more or seek compensation in cross-subsides, etc.

    >b) you can’t grow the economy solely with investment in the public sector

    WWII disagrees. But no worries anyway, since this is so far from happening it’s curious why you would even mention it. It almost sounds like you’re suggesting that this has been proposed or is happening, or you fear that it might happen. Incentives to businesses – especially to small businesses – hasn’t ceased to exist in the slightest.

    >c) capitalism only “works” if entities are allowed to “fail”… bailouts defeat capitalism.

    Well said and I completely agree. Though I’m extremely socially liberal I’m also a fiscal conservative. I’d just cut military spending back to 10x that of any distant threat and spend more on public services, like health and education.

    >e) socialism removes incentive to improve, and governments always do things more poorly than commercial enterprises

    False and false. But say it long enough and emphatically enough and the people will believe you. Also you can apply for a job on AM radio.

    Example: the fire department is a socialist program. That’s right, that red firetruck stands for communism not emergency vehicle. Healthcare (or rather, reactive medical care) same thing. So after the fire was extinguished and the H1N1 vaccinations prevented potentially great losses, you mean to tell me that this only removed the incentive to improve? It’s a false assertion fed to the world by the likes of the Heritage Foundation, and it’s summed up here: rational self-interest. Since rational self-interest is immutable gospel, especially on the right, you’re forbidden to accept good that comes from irrational behavior.

    Newsflash: people are irrational, period.

    True we work harder for bonuses. But making that the only permissible form of reason to “intelligently” evaluate socioeconomic cause and effect is either ignorant or “evil” (lacking empathy), imo.

    >f) allowing for increased investment in private sector makes jobs, and promotes growth (see “Reaganomics” and the boom times of the 80′s and 90′s.)

    Almost destroyed us. See Prop-13, deregulation and what the wild west of market fundamentalism can do to a state. Wait a minute, just look at the thousands we’re about to starve in the name of sound policy. Casting the mentally ill into the streets without acknowledging the owners of multi-million dollar, oceanfront homes paying $1,200 per year in property taxes? Talk about “tough love.”

    >g) the best way to increase tax revenue is to increase individual income and spending… increase the gross rather than take a larger percentage

    Well it’s only one way. Sales tax is another and property tax is what stabilizes the rest of our country – even through real estate downturns. Why do you think the budget turns red so quickly when we have double digit unemployment? It’s obvious. Income tax helps but some states don’t even collect any and are doing far better than CA financially. Perhaps this has to do with the fact that CA subsidizes the red states more than the red states subsidizes us.

    No offense, but I’ve decided to disallow clever yet inaccurate logic to pass unchallenged. The manufacture of consent of which you are a player or a pawn needs to stop.

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